Major League Rugby and Legends Enter Long-Term Strategic Partnership to Accelerate Growth

Comprehensive Collaboration Includes Global Partnerships,

Digital Marketing, and Business Intelligence

Major League Rugby (MLR) and Legends, a global premium experiences company, have announced a long-term partnership to drive commercial revenue and accelerate growth for the North American professional rugby league. Through this comprehensive partnership, Legends will manage global partnerships, digital marketing, and business intelligence to drive fan engagement and optimize revenue generation.

“We are thrilled to announce this partnership with Legends.  This collaboration will help drive engagement and value for our fans and our partners, which will always be our highest priority as we continue to grow the game,” said MLR CEO, Nic Benson. “Major League Rugby has had great success with partnerships in our first six seasons and deploying these additional best-in-class resources will allow us to supercharge our growth in the years ahead.”

To support the partnership, Legends will build a dedicated sponsorship sales team for MLR that will guide sponsorship valuation, go-to-market strategy, and partnership execution. Legends also will implement a data-led digital marketing strategy to drive revenue across every fan touchpoint for MLR, from the ticket purchase through the gameday experience. Additionally, Legends’ technology solutions division will deliver innovative, data-driven actionable insights and solutions to support MLR across all commercial aspects of the league.

“This is an exciting time for the sport of rugby in North America as interest is growing at a dramatic pace and Rugby World Cup is coming to the US in 2031,” said Mike Tomon, Co-President and COO, Legends. “Major League Rugby’s commitment to community and growing the game of rugby is admirable, and we are proud to now call them partners.”

Entering its seventh season, Major League Rugby is a professional sports league representing the highest rugby competition in North America. The League has evolved from seven teams in 2018 to 13 teams in the coming 2024 season, featuring 12 from the United States and one from Canada. 

MLR gameplay is fast, hard-hitting, and thrilling, a distinctly American interpretation of the international game. The league’s matches are televised on Fox Sports, among other national and local market platforms, and it also owns the over-the-top (OTT) platform, The Rugby Network, for streaming viewership of MLR, Gallagher Premiership, and other content in the U.S. and internationally. As the league continues to grow and best position itself in the professional sports landscape, the goal remains the same: to grow the game of rugby.

Legends is partnered with many of the world’s most iconic sports, entertainment, and attractions brands. The company has a strong track record in rugby including work with the 2019 and 2023 Rugby World Cup Irish Rugby Football Union, New Zealand Rugby, and Rugby Australia.

Towson Athletics Partners With Legends to Secure New Arena Naming Rights Partner

Legends to Lead Search for Partner Aligned with Towson’s Commitment to Community and Delivering a Best-in-Class Experience for Students, Student-Athletes, Alumni and TU Fans 

Towson Athletics x Legends

Towson University Director of Athletics Steve Eigenbrot today announced that Legends, a global premium experiences company, has been selected to oversee a search to secure a new naming rights partner for the Tigers’ arena.

This announcement follows a mutual agreement between Towson University and SECU to end the current arena naming rights agreement when the contract expired on September 30, 2023. SECU has been the arena naming rights partner since the facility opened in Fall 2013. In the interim, the arena will be called TU Arena. 

“TU Arena naming rights presents a unique opportunity for a brand to send a message about its commitment to the state of Maryland and beyond,” Eigenbrot said.  “From hosting 24 high local school graduations all the way to the national CBS Sports broadcast of our basketball games, our new naming partner will have a truly unique opportunity to send a loud message about its commitment to the local community, our 20,000+ Towson students on campus and the millions that view our brand on national and regional television each year.”

“Legends is excited to partner with Towson to find an arena naming rights partner who aligns with the university’s strong values, commitment to community, and investment in creating opportunities for TU students and student-athletes,” said Michael Behan, COO, Collegiate Partnerships at Legends. “With more than 150 years of history, this is a unique opportunity for a brand looking to connect with greater Baltimore.”

The 5,200-seat multi-purpose TU Arena is home to four Towson Tiger athletics teams – men’s and women’s basketball, volleyball, and gymnastics. During the first 10 years of the arena, the teams have a combined home record of 313-146, a .682 winning percentage.

The 117,000-square-foot venue has 340 club seats, four private suites and nearly 100courtside seats. Upon opening, the arena was awarded LEED Gold certification for energy use, lighting, water and material use, and other sustainable features.

The arena is the current home of the Baltimore Blast of the Major Arena Soccer League and hosts more than 100 events annually, ranging from concerts to commencements.

“As one of the top-50 public institutions in the nation, and with the largest incoming student class in university history, TU is also uniquely poised as an anchor institution with growing momentum,” added Eigenbrot. “I am confident a new arena naming partner will benefit from that partnership.”

Legends brings a depth of experience in the naming rights space, using a data and analytics-based approach from the search process through to creating unique, holistic partnerships that expand far beyond the name on the building. Most recently, Legends secured the San Diego State University’s Snapdragon Stadium, Georgia Tech’s Bobby Dodd Stadium at Hyundai Field as well as Los Angeles Rams’ and Chargers’ SoFi Stadium, the Las Vegas Raiders’ Allegiant Stadium, Hollywood Park’s YouTube Theater and the Columbus Crew’s Lower.com Field.

SPORTS BUSINESS JOURNAL: Browns tap Legends to find next stadium name

Via Sports Business Journal

By Bret McCormick

Browns x Legends

The Browns have picked Legends to find a new naming rights sponsor for the team’s stadium. Legends, which won an RFP for the Browns’ business, has worked with the team’s owners, Haslam Sports Group, previously, securing the naming rights for the Columbus Crew’s Lower.com Field and overseeing the $314M MLS stadium’s construction. Legends and the Browns are pursuing a long-term partner with Cleveland roots that values a national spotlight.

“We’ll look through those lenses to see what kind of companies can reap from both,” said Chris Hibbs, President, Legends Global Partnerships. “We’ll be exhaustive; that’s what our clients expect.”

The Browns have been considering a potential renovation of Cleveland Browns Stadium or a new stadium altogether, giving Legends an angle with which to pitch potential naming rights sponsors. “Whether it’s a renovated building or a new building makes it kind of fun, kind of complex,” said Hibbs. “You’re talking about a story that’s going to grow or evolve.”

Legends has clinched five naming rights deals in sports and entertainment so far this year, including the Bills’ New Highmark Stadium, Georgia Tech’s Bobby Dodd Stadium at Hyundai Field, and PGA of America’s Monument Realty PGA District at PGA Frisco. Its growing NFL naming rights business includes SoFi Stadium, Allegiant Stadium, and the recent New Highmark Stadium. For this project, Chad Estis (EVP, Legends), Scott Malaga (VP, Legends Global Partnerships) and Hibbs will lead Legends’ efforts, while Eric Clouse (Chief Commercial Officer), Dave Jenkins (EVP and COO) and Erica Muhleman (SVP, Corporate Partnerships) will lead the Browns’ side.

Cleveland Browns Stadium, located in downtown Cleveland on the shores of Lake Erie, was called FirstEnergy Stadium from 2013 to April of this year, but the agreement was mutually ended seven years early following FirstEnergy’s complicity in a bribery scandal that sent the speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives to prison. The Browns handled the naming rights search a decade ago in-house and were receiving roughly $6M annually from FirstEnergy for the stadium naming rights until the deal was voided.

BUFFALO BUSINESS FIRST: Pegulas sell AdPro Sports stake to Legends

Via Buffalo Business First

Adpro Sports

The Pegula family has sold its majority stake in Cheektowaga-based AdPro Sports to Legends, a wide-ranging sports services company that has built increasingly strong ties with Pegula Sports and Entertainment and the Buffalo Bills.

The deal closed earlier this week, according to a statement from PSE.

“We have had an ongoing partnership with Legends for the Bills’ new stadium project over the last several months,” according to the statement. “And even though this sale is separate from the stadium agreement, Legends was impressed with our team and facility, and has maintained they will continue to invest and operate out of Western New York.”

The announcement came shortly after AdPro founder Ron Raccuia left the employ of the Buffalo Bills.

Terms of the sale have not been disclosed.

In a statement, Legends Global Merchandise President Kirta Carroll said the acquisition fits into the company’s rapid growth over the last few years.

“The acquisition of ADPRO Sports and the addition of their Western New York production facility will accelerate our licensing and wholesale business and expand our in-house production capabilities, better positioning us to deliver an expanded assortment of first-class merchandise products for our partners and their fans,” she said.

AdPro, based in Cheektowaga, handles sports licensing, apparel and merchandise. It has more than 100 employees, according to its website, and works with major apparel brands such as Nike, Adidas, Under Armour and New Era. AdPro’s revenue in 2021 was $28.71 million, according to Buffalo Business First’s List of Fast Track Companies. Revenue figures were verified by the Amherst accounting firm of Dopkins & Co. LLP.

Raccuia, who founded AdPro in 1998, was named the most influential person in Western New York in Business First’s annual Power 250 listing. His prominent participation in negotiations for the Buffalo Bills stadium was one of the major reasons for his No. 1 ranking.

The Pegulas bought a majority stake in the company in 2017. Raccuia remained AdPro president, while simultaneously working for Pegula Sports and Entertainment. He most recently was executive vice president and chief operating officer of the Bills.

Earlier this week, the Bills announced that team owner Terry Pegula was stepping in as president amid numerous changes to the team’s senior leadership — including Raccuia’s departure.

Legends, founded by Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and former New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner, has been assisting the Bills with the design and construction of the team’s new stadium.

In May the Bills announced that Legends will be the concessions provider at the new stadium when it opens in 2026, replacing Buffalo-based Delaware North.

Cricket Australia and Legends Partner to Deliver Enhanced E-Commerce and In-Venue Retail Experience for CA Fans

New Online Shop Debuts Today for 2024 Kit Launch Week 

Cricket Australia x Legends

Cricket Australia (CA) and Legends, a data-intelligence fueled global premium experiences company, announced today a new partnership where Legends’ global merchandise division will manage omnichannel merchandise for CA. This partnership will see Legends create an enhanced, best-in-class shopping experience for fans online and in-venue.

A new online shopping experience for CA fans around the globe is available today at Shop.Cricket.com.au ahead of the CA 2023-24 kit launch this week. The new online shop offers a more integrated, seamless experience for fans with new and more comprehensive merchandise offerings across all categories. Additional enhancements and product expansion will be added over time.

CA’s kit week includes the unveiling of the 2023-24 Big Bash League kits on Tuesday, September 19; the launch of a new partnership for the Big Bash Leagues headwear on Wednesday, September 20 and a week of excitement wraps up with the launch of the 2023-24 International men’s and women’s kits.

“We are very excited to be partnering with Legends to provide the very best service to our fans through world-class and innovative shopping experiences online and in stadiums around the country,” Stephanie Beltrame, Executive General Manager Broadcast & Commercial, CA said.

Legends will also work with CA to deliver the in-venue merchandise strategy and provide support across all match venues. As part of the relationship, Legends is building a dedicated team in Australia to grow the CA e-commerce and retail business.  

“We are proud to form this long-term partnership with Cricket Australia to support their global business growth by delivering an e-commerce and retail experience that helps CA further connect with and grow their fanbase,” said Victoria Hawksley, Executive Vice President of International Retail, Legends.

Legends’ fully integrated retail and merchandising vertical solution works with world-class clients around the globe across e-commerce, in-venue retail, large-scale live event, brick-and-mortar store operations, licensing, and customer merchandise. This includes vast experience developing and operating omnichannel retail experiences for some of the world’s largest sporting events and organizations, 2023 Rugby World Cup, 2022 and 2023 FIFA Men’s and Women’s World Cup, 2023 Ryder Cup, Dallas Cowboys, New York Yankees, and Real Madrid.

LPGA Launches Exciting New Pro Shop in Partnership with Legends

Online retail store features enhanced merchandise offerings

from world-renown brands to reach the Association’s global fanbase

LPGA Pro Shop

The Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) today announced the launch of its new online merchandise shop, the LPGA Pro Shop, as part of its groundbreaking partnership with Legends, the data-intelligence-fueled global premium experiences company.

The LPGA Pro Shop offers an enhanced merchandise experience to fans worldwide, featuring an expanded selection of LPGA-branded products for on and off the golf course from renowned brands — such as Lululemon, Greyson, G/Fore, Yeti, and ’47 Brand — as well as 2023 U.S. Solheim Cup apparel from Dunning, the Official Uniform Supplier of the 2023 U.S. Solheim Cup Team, and Imperial, the Official Headwear Supplier of the 2023 U.S. Solheim Cup Team. This e-commerce platform represents a significant milestone in the LPGA’s efforts to strengthen its brand and provide fans with an additional touchpoint to connect with the organization.

“This new online retail experience will help us drive revenue and broaden the exposure of the LPGA brand all over the world,” said Matt Chmura, LPGA Chief Marketing, Communications and Brand Officer. “And this is just the beginning of this exciting relationship. The LPGA and Legends teams are already working on plans to further enhance and grow these product lines and brand partnerships into the future.”

The new e-commerce experience features an expanded offering of lifestyle products for women, men, and youth, including hoodies, t-shirts, loungewear as well as an assortment of home goods. As well, LPGA and Legends collaborated to develop new designs with non-traditional LPGA marks, including merchandise using retro LPGA logos, featuring LPGA block text, and headwear and t-shirts with modern, fashion-forward designs. 

“We are thrilled to be working alongside the LPGA to bring their fanbase an unparalleled shopping experience featuring an expansive selection of merchandise and accessories for on and off the course,” said Kevin Ring, President of Legends Golf. “Together, we’re setting a new standard for women’s golf, and this Pro Shop is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what fans can expect from our strong partnership.”

Announced in April 2023, the collaboration between the LPGA and Legends is revolutionizing the way fans connect with women’s golf, offering an unparalleled merchandise experience and utilizing data-driven strategies to raise fan engagement to new heights. Legends’ global merchandise team oversees e-commerce, licensing, and select on-site event retail for the LPGA.

To experience and purchase from the LPGA Pro Shop, visit lpgaproshop.com.

Arsenal Appoints Legends to Manage Sales and Delivery for Meeting and Event Business at Emirates Stadium

Arsenal x Legends

Arsenal announced today the appointment of global premium experiences company Legends to manage sales and delivery for the club’s non-match day meeting and event business at Emirates Stadium. Working in partnership, Arsenal and Legends will leverage the wide range of facilities at Emirates Stadium to maximize non-matchday revenue.

The partnership will reenergise the meetings and events market bringing the iconic Emirates Stadium to life on non-matchdays. Boasting an array of versatile, modern, and luxurious spaces, The Emirates Stadium offers everything event planners would expect of a stage hosting one of the world’s most successful football clubs. The meetings and events business at Emirates Stadium caters to a wide range of events from private intimate meetings to large multi-day, multi-space conferences, and Christmas parties. A truly unique setting, with added value to be able to offer behind-the-scenes tours and merchandise to create a memorable visit.

clubs. The meetings and events business at Emirates Stadium caters to a wide range of events from private intimate meetings to large multi-day, multi-space conferences, and Christmas parties. A truly unique setting, with added value to be able to offer behind-the-scenes tours and merchandise to create a memorable visit.

“Emirates Stadium is a first-class venue with global appeal in a highly accessible London location that offers a wide range of customizable opportunities for events,” said Ryan Tawwater, Vice President of International and Special Projects, Legends Hospitality. “Legends is excited to collaborate with Arsenal to develop a proactive approach to drive revenue across the venue on non-matchdays.”

Tom McCann, Arsenal’s Venue Director, said: “We’re delighted to confirm our new partnership with Legends. Emirates Stadium is a fantastic venue with brilliant connections in the heart of London. We have a strong track record of hosting some brilliant events, and we’re excited to work with Legends to build on this.”

Legends is partnered with many of the world’s most iconic sports, entertainment, and attractions brands, providing a holistic, data-driven service solution. Throughout Europe, Legends also counts Real Madrid, FC Barcelona, Liverpool FC, and Manchester City FC, among many others, as clients.

For more information and event enquiries for Emirates Stadium, interested parties can visit https://www.arsenal.com/the-club/Meetings&Events or email arsenalevents@arsenal.co.uk.

Soccer Champions Tour Announces DIRECTV as Presenting Sponsor

Inaugural 2023 Tour Features Eight Matches Between Global Soccer Giants in

Major U.S. Markets from July 22 – August 2

Soccer Champions Tour presented by DIRECTV

Soccer Champions Tour announced today that DIRECTV will be the presenting sponsor of the first-time summer series of games, now officially “Soccer Champions Tour presented by DIRECTV.” The tour includes eight matches between Real Madrid, FC Barcelona, Juventus Football Club, AC Milan, Arsenal, and Manchester United to be played in major markets across the United States between Sat., July 22 and Wed., Aug. 2, 2023.

This is a significant moment in continuing DIRECTV’s legacy of bringing the best sports and entertainment to fans across the U.S. and doing it in a way that is unmatched in the pay-TV industry. The 2023 Soccer Champions Tour presented by DIRECTV is the first time the six participating clubs, which hold among them 31 European trophies, will participate together in a U.S. series.

DIRECTV brings a long legacy of being a leader in sports and marquee sponsorships to the Soccer Champions Tour, having worked hand in hand with teams, leagues, and events across the entire U.S. sporting landscape in its nearly 30 years as a content distributor. In addition, it currently provides carriage of 17 soccer leagues from 14 countries across its various platforms.

As part of the agreement, DIRECTV receives integration into the primary and secondary Soccer Champions Tour logos and marks, category exclusivity for the Tour, inclusion in each of the broadcasts, in-stadium logo exposure, VIP hospitality at each match, an on-site VIP area within the Fan Zone, and social and digital media exposure from the event and its participating teams, among several other activations.   

“DIRECTV believes in putting the best in sports and entertainment in the hands of audiences from coast to coast. The Soccer Champions Tour is arguably the best collection of European clubs ever assembled for one event in the United States,” said Vince Torres, chief marketing officer of DIRECTV. “Our presenting sponsorship of the Soccer Champions Tour delivers on that promise, and we’re excited to showcase some of the best soccer players in the world to fans in stadiums, their homes and local establishments across the nation.”

“On behalf of the Soccer Champions Tour, we are excited to have DIRECTV join as the presenting sponsor for the 2023 tour,” said Chris Hibbs, President, Legends Global Partnerships. “DIRECTV’s long-standing commitment to delivering high-quality soccer matches to the American soccer fan makes them the perfect partner to bring this incredible tour featuring eight matchups with the biggest names in global soccer over the span of 12 days to soccer fans in the U.S. this summer.”

Soccer Champions Tour was created by a newly formed company of global investment firm Sixth Street to support the continued global growth of top-tier sports franchises by organizing high-profile, competitive events for the millions of fans that live outside the domestic markets of the biggest clubs. The 2024 tour will be expanded to include the world’s biggest women’s clubs.

Soccer Champions Tour is working closely with global premium experiences company Legends to bring these marquee matchups and elevated in-match experiences to local fans of the game. Legends represented the Tour in securing the presenting sponsorship with DIRECTV. The 2023 Soccer Champions Tour is being produced in partnership with AEG, the world’s leading sports and live entertainment company.

San Diego MLS and Legends Announce Multi-Year Partnership

Legends to Drive Commercial Revenue through Partnerships, Premium Seating, and Ticket Sales

San Diego MLS x Legends

San Diego MLS, the newest team in Major League Soccer, and Legends, a global premium experiences company, today announced a new multi-year partnership focused on delivering a first-class experience for fans and partners with Legends managing global partnerships, premium seating, and season ticket sales for the club.

Legends is working with San Diego MLS ownership and CEO Tom Penn to create lasting partnerships and season ticket memberships for the club as it enters the next phase of its journey towards a 2025 kickoff. This partnership will place an increased focus on expanding the club’s reach not only in San Diego, but across the nation, beyond the Mexican border, and throughout the world.

“Legends brings an incredible amount of sport and soccer expertise that will help us in our journey to build a successful club for San Diego and the legions of dedicated fans,” said Penn. “Legends’ data-driven approach coupled with the leadership and local market knowledge, will maximize our partnerships opportunities and help create the best experience for fans.”

“We are proud to partner with San Diego MLS to help deliver an exceptional experience for San Diego soccer fans when the club takes the field at Snapdragon Stadium in less than two years,” said Shervin Mirhashemi, CEO, Legends. “Our team has extensive experience working on sales campaigns, premium programs, and founding partner engagements with global soccer entities and in the Southern California market. We will deliver an experience that is unique to San Diego and positions the club for long-term, sustainable success.”

San Diego MLS is a partnership between Right to Dream (RTD), the global soccer community of world-class academies, clubs and educational partners and the Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation, the first Native American tribe to have an ownership stake in professional soccer in the United States. RTD is owned by distinguished entrepreneur, investor and philanthropist Mohamed Mansour who will serve at San Diego MLS Chairman. Also joining the investor group is club partner and San Diego Padres player, Manny Machado.

Legends’ expansive experience in worldwide football includes supporting MLS clubs the Columbus Crew with the ground-up development and operation of Lower.com Stadium, and Los Angeles FC similarly with Banc of California Stadium (now BMO Stadium). Legends oversaw planning, project development, premium seating, ticket sales, global partnerships, and naming rights for both highly successful projects. Recently, in San Diego, Legends led commercial sales, including premium ticketing, global partnerships, and naming rights, for the opening of Snapdragon Stadium, the new home of San Diego MLS and one of the premier soccer venues in the country and across the world.

Soccer fans can reserve their place on the priority selection list for season tickets to San Diego’s inaugural MLS season by paying $18 at SanDiegoFC.com. All proceeds will be donated to San Diego Foundation to fund non-profits investing in the development of youth soccer across San Diego County. For the latest news and club updates, follow @SanDiegoMLS2025 on social media across all platforms and use the hashtags #SanDiegoMLS and #LetsKickItSD.

BUFFALO NEWS: Legends wins Bills stadium food and beverage contract

Via Buffalo News

Buffalo Bills Stadium

The sports consulting firm Legends has already been shaping the new Buffalo Bills stadium on the inside and out, from concept to design to sales.

Now the company is entering a long-term partnership with the Bills, one that will make Legends, which was co-founded by Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, a significant and ongoing player in Western New York.

Legends Hospitality has been awarded the food and beverage rights for the new stadium, which is scheduled to open in 2026.

Legends was selected from a field of four bidders, which included Sodexo, Levy Restaurants and the Buffalo-based Delaware North Cos., which has held the Bills stadium contract since 1992.

“They clearly have shown the ability to understand our marketplace at a very high level,” said Ron Raccuia, the Bills’ executive vice president and chief operating officer. “Overall, we felt they offered us the best opportunity to deliver the type of food and beverage experience that we know our fans want in the new stadium.”

Terms of the deal, which Raccuia describes as a “long-term agreement,” were not disclosed.

“The Bills have a great vision, great understanding of the business and great knowledge of the market and their fans,” Tomon said. “When the fans approach this, they’ll sit back and think, ‘they thought of everything.’ “

Landing the contract, which Bills officials revealed Tuesday night to The Buffalo News, is a major win – if an unsurprising one – for Legends. The company is already working with the Bills and the architectural firm Populous on the design of the new stadium. Legends is also overseeing sales for the $1.54 billion facility, including the marketing of personal seat licenses and naming rights, and has conducted multiple studies of the Buffalo market and the Bills fan base.

“They’ve spent a lot of time with our fans on surveys, in small group settings, in Western New York,” Raccuia said. “We feel very confident in their knowledge of our fan base and what we’re trying to deliver for an unbelievable Bills fan experience.”

Each of the bidders responded to an RFP (request for proposal) last year with a written document that Raccuia describes as a “vision statement.” That was followed by a series of interviews that probed into their philosophies on food and menu development, pricing strategy and approach to catering on non-game days. They discussed finances, leadership structure and sales strategies. Bills officials also visited venues run by each of the four finalists – sometimes officially, other times unannounced.

Following a trend in sports arenas, the Bills’ menu will have what Raccuia calls a “hyperlocal” focus that celebrates Western New York cuisine. He noted that all the finalists’ proposals “really nailed the local aspect of it,” and added, “Where I believe Legends was perhaps a little better than the rest on there was understanding how that fit into all the other things that we’re doing: How it fit into beverage service. How it fit into pre-game. How it fit into a postgame type of environment. It was one step different than some of the others.”

Legends handles food and beverage for several venues, including Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, AT&T Stadium in Dallas and SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles, where it integrates local cuisine into both everyday concessions and high-end, restaurant-style clubs.

In an email to The News on Tuesday night, Dan Smith, the president of Legends Hospitality, said, “Legends is proud to expand our long-term partnership with the Buffalo Bills to deliver a best-in-class hospitality experience for Bills Mafia at games, showcasing the very best Buffalo has to offer and beyond.”

Delaware North will continue running the food and beverage program at Highmark through the 2025 season. The decision puts a dent in Delaware North’s portfolio, although with $3.8 billion in revenues last year and operations around the world, it’s likely one the company can absorb. Delaware North officials couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

“Delaware North has been a great partner of ours,” Raccuia said. “I can’t say anything but great things about what they’ve done for us and what they will continue to do over the next three years, their professionalism in this process, and their commitment to Western New York.”

The new stadium, which will be located across the street from the current venue, will have significantly more food offerings than Highmark. The Bills also hope to host non-football events “a couple hundred times a year,” Raccuia said, noting that the hiring Legends will likely expand local hiring to meet that need.

This spring, Legends also took over operations of the current Buffalo Bills store, a year-round retail shop located at Highmark Stadium, from Delaware North Cos. Raccuia noted that the former Delaware North employees have joined Legends, which has “expanded that business. We feel the same thing will happen with food and beverage.”

Soccer Champions Tour Announces New U.S. Summer Series Featuring Real Madrid CF, FC Barcelona, Juventus, AC Milan, Arsenal, and Manchester United

Global soccer giants set to face off in major U.S. markets from July 22 – August 2

Series backed by new Sixth Street portfolio company built to bring epic soccer matchups to local fans around the world

Soccer Champions Tour presented by DIRECTV

Soccer Champions Tour today announced the launch and schedule for a new series of games featuring six of the world’s most iconic soccer clubs to be played this summer in major markets across the United States. Spain’s Real Madrid and FC Barcelona, Italy’s Juventus Football Club and AC Milan, and England’s Arsenal and Manchester United will compete in eight matches between Saturday, July 22, and Wednesday, August 2, 2023.

The 2023 Soccer Champions Tour is the first time these six clubs, which hold among them 31 European trophies, have participated together in a U.S. series. The eight fixtures will take place in host market stadiums in Dallas, Houston, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Orlando, and San Francisco.

Highlights of the 2023 Soccer Champions Tour include Spanish giants Real Madrid and FC Barcelona meeting in Texas for the first time ever at AT&T Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys; Manchester United and Real Madrid facing off for the first time since 2018; FC Barcelona and Arsenal competing in a rematch of the 2006 European final; and Italian rivals AC Milan and Juventus playing each other in California for the first time in their more than 120-year histories.

Soccer Champions Tour was created by a newly formed company of global investment firm Sixth Street to support the continued global growth of top-tier sports franchises by organizing high-profile, competitive events for the millions of fans that live outside the domestic markets of the biggest clubs.

“We are proud to be partnering with the world’s most storied clubs, which have the world’s strongest and most passionate supporters, to provide this rare opportunity for American fans to experience the game at the highest level,” said Alan Waxman, Co-Founder and CEO at Sixth Street. “While this year’s tour consists of men’s clubs, we look forward to expanding next summer to bring the world’s best women’s clubs to local audiences around the globe, and in the future to evolve this series into a format with real games of consequence.”

In addition to men’s and women’s professional club matches, the tour also intends to organize elite youth academy competitions in the years to come.

Soccer Champions Tour is working closely with global premium experiences company Legends to bring these marquee matchups and elevated in-game experiences to local fans of the game.

Added Shervin Mirhashemi, CEO, Legends: “Legends is proud to bring fans of the beautiful game this unforgettable experience this summer and deliver a fan experience that will match the world-class soccer on the pitch. We can’t wait to see stadiums filled across the United States with fans cheering on some of the best clubs in the world as they compete in the Soccer Champions Tour.”

The 2023 Soccer Champions Tour is being produced in partnership with AEG, the world’s leading sports and live entertainment company.

“AEG is excited about the partnership with Soccer Champions Tour and Legends to bring the most successful soccer clubs in the world to fans across the U.S.,” said Tom Braun, Sr. Vice President, Soccer & Business Operations and Business Development at AEG. “Every matchup in this series is of the highest caliber and we’re thrilled that American soccer fans will have the opportunity to see these epic games featuring legendary teams live and in person.”

Soccer Champions Tour Schedule
Saturday, July 22
FC Barcelona vs. Juventus at Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara, CA


Sunday, July 23
Real Madrid vs. AC Milan at The Rose Bowl Stadium, Pasadena, CA
 
Wednesday, July 26
Arsenal vs. FC Barcelona at SoFi Stadium, Inglewood, CA

Wednesday, July 26

Real Madrid vs. Manchester United at NRG Stadium, Houston, TX

Thursday, July 27

Juventus vs. AC Milan at Dignity Health Sports Park, Carson, CA

Saturday, July 29

FC Barcelona vs. Real Madrid at AT&T Stadium, Arlington, TX

Tuesday, August 1

AC Milan vs. FC Barcelona at Allegiant Stadium, Las Vegas, NV

Wednesday, August 2

Juventus vs. Real Madrid at Camping World Stadium, Orlando, FL

Exclusive pre-sale tickets will be available starting Tuesday, May 16, with the general on-sale ticket access beginning on Friday, May 19. For access to the pre-sale, all fans are invited to sign up at www.SoccerChampionsTour.com. All individual game and venue-specific information is also available at the tour website and fans can follow @TheSCTour on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and Twitter for updates.

The matches remain subject to approval by the relevant football authorities.

Spanish Press Release