Basketball Travelers Inc. has signed a two-year sponsorship extension with the V.I. Department of Tourism for the Paradise Jam Basketball Tournament, which officials said this week has “consistently” had a more than $1 million economic impact in the territory.
“This partnership is a wonderful opportunity for community involvement in this sports tourism activity,” Tourism Commissioner Beverly Nicholson Doty told the Source over the weekend. “Nels (Hawkinson) and his team have been incredible ambassadors for the territory.”
Hawkinson, who is executive director of Basketball Travelers, and the rest of his crew announced that they had signed the extension during last week’s Paradise Jam kickoff press conference, which was held at the Marriott Frenchman’s Bay Resort on St. Thomas. For most of its years here, the tournament has been held for the most part at the University of the Virgin Islands Sports and Fitness Center, and will open this year on Nov. 20 with Ohio University playing Tulsa on the men’s side.
According to Nicholson Doty, the tournament brings in about $500,000 in advertising equivalency (what coverage of the tournament would cost in actual advertising dollars) for television, resulting in “millions of impressions.” Direct ads are placed on radio, television and online for Tourism as a component of the agreement, she said.
The newly signed contract includes:
– A $250,000 base payment which is contingent on a minimum spend of $1.5 million, or 2,500 room nights
marketing mandates that equal approximately $250,000 in advertising equivalency for media exposure
– A performance incentive of up to $125,000 based on the delivery of slightly more than a 1,000 additional room nights which has a return on investment of approximately $625,000, and
– Other items that include providing tickets for schools and facilitating other community projects.
At last week’s press conference, Sports, Parks and Recreation officials said that Basketball Travelers has continued to work with them, donating basketballs not only to the department’s programs but to schools under the Education Department.
During the press conference, Basketball Travelers also announced the evolution of its partnership with UVI, which has also helped pay for a new floor for the Sports and Fitness Center that will advertise the tournament year round.