Jul 2021 staff moves and sports business industry news in one spot — updated as they happen, so make sure you check back regularly.

Jul 1, 2021

American Hockey League announces that the AHL Board of Governors has approved the transfer of ownership of the Rockford IceHogs AHL franchise to the Chicago Blackhawks. In addition, the Blackhawks commit to keeping the IceHogs in Rockford through 2036 while the City of Rockford, and the Rockford Area Venues and Entertainment Authority (RAVE) and the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity (DCEO) unveil a $23 million multi-year capital project to revitalize the BMO Harris Bank Center.



Jul 2, 2021

California United Strikers FC announce a formal partnership agreement with Veo, a Danish company that has developed a camera and software solution that allows teams to record and analyze matches without the need for an operator. The partnership will see the team utilize the Veo system for all their NISA matches and training sessions while also extending the platform to their youth affiliate, Strikers FC.



Jul 7, 2021

American Hat Company and PBR (Professional Bull Riders) announce a new partnership with American Hat becoming the official cowboy hat of PBR’s weekly Unleash The Beast competition. Through the partnership, which includes digital signage and concourse space at Unleash The Beast events, 10 members of the PBR elite tour’s team, including bullfighters and announcers, will now wear American Hat Company cowboy hats. Additionally, PBR CEO & Commissioner Sean Gleason will now exclusively wear American Hat Company cowboy hats.


Jul 9, 2021

Big3 and Microsoft expand their partnership, with Microsoft named the league’s Official Technology Partner. The partnership will include Microsoft and Xbox as the official jersey patch partner, in-game signage, and product pop-ups. Of the 12 teams in the BIG3, six will have Microsoft branding on their jerseys and six will have Xbox. Microsoft will also present the “BIG3 Season MVP” and “Player of the Week,” the latter of which will be chosen by a fan vote during each week.

In additional Big3 news, the league announces it has partnered with sports wagering monitoring company US Integrity. USI will provide its integrity monitoring service to protect against betting-related fraud and corruption as fans across the country wager on the league’s fourth season.



Jul 12, 2021

Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment, parent of the Philadelphia 76ers and New Jersey Devils, tabs Tad Brown as the company’s new CEO effective Aug 3, replacing Scott O’Neill. O’Neill announced in late June that he was stepping down. Brown had been with the Houston Rockets for the past 15 years, most recently as CEO.




Tate Kelly joins Tennessee Titans as Director of Corporate Partnerships, from Assoc GM, Gonzaga University Athletics, Learfield IMG College.



Brad Fain to VP, Ticket Sales & Service, Detroit Pistons, from Director, Ticket Sales, with BSE Global, parent of the Brooklyn Nets.



Bruin Capital reaches an agreement to buy Oddschecker from Flutter for a reported $218 million.



Jul 13, 2021

The Sports Marketer, LLC, a Chicago-based sports and lifestyle marketing firm, has acquired BIG Sports Consulting, a Los Angeles, Calif.-based sports marketing consultancy. Terms were not disclosed.



Chicago Red Stars launch a new partnership with The Black Bread Company, the first ever Black-owned, Chicago-based sliced bread company. This first-of-its-kind partnership is part of the Red Stars’ new “Stars of Chicago Business” initiative, meant to give complimentary sponsorship opportunities to small, local and minority owned businesses.





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Header photo via PBR
Updated: Ju1 13, 2021