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MY360

MY360: A Suitable Feast

Sunday, 11.29.2009 / 12:15 PM / Blogs
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MY360: A Suitable Feast
After last night’s absolutely incredible Andrea Bocelli concert at the BankAtlantic Center, our packed Thanksgiving Week of hockey and entertainment has finally reached its conclusion, but not without giving South Florida fans one of the most exciting seven-day stretches in recent memory.

The “Hockey Feast presented by CompUSA” gave us three Florida Panthers home games with crowds of over 16,000 fans. Despite suffering setbacks in our last four games, the Cats have posted a 5-2-3 mark in their last 10 games, earning points in eight of our last 10 contests.

Clearly, the recent results have been unacceptable as we attempt to develop a winning culture, and based on what team Captain Bryan McCabe has said, the team is holding itself to the same standard:

“That is what has happened all week,” McCabe said after Friday’s game. “We've had leads and have blown them. That’s unacceptable.”

Though Cats supporters did not see the results they wanted, they were privy to the unveiling of the new Panthers third jersey.

The uniform, which features a completely alternate logo and color scheme, debuted to rave reviews during Monday night’s game against the Penguins. We brought them out again on Friday night vs. the Maple Leafs and will wear them ten more times throughout the season.

All told, over 65,000 people came through the BankAtlantic Center’s turnstiles for four events this past week, but our successes were not only in the arena – they were also away from it.

On Monday, the Florida Panthers Foundation hosted a special raffle that raised over $5,000 in support of Michael Brewer, the South Florida teen who was tragically burned.

Then on Tuesday, Panthers players and employees, along with GM Randy Sexton and Co-Managing Partner and CEO Stu Siegel arrived at the Cooperative Feeding Center of Broward County with Thanksgiving meals for over 750 underprivileged families.

When Stu and Chairman Cliff Viner were introduced as SSE’s new Co-Managing Partners almost two weeks ago, they talked at length about being committed to the South Florida community. And while last week’s initiatives were just the beginning, I look at them as a major step in the right direction.

Overall, last week as one of the most exciting and energetic in recent memory, and certainly our media exposure was reflective of that. On Wednesday morning I did an interview on the Paul & Young Ron Show where we donated a Panthers suite to their Holiday Food Drive. On Friday, our Merchandise Director Jen Simmons appeared on NBC’s South Florida Today to discuss the unveiling of our new third jersey. In addition, throughout the week South Florida media personalities such as NBC’s Joe Rose, WPLG’s Will Manso, WPTV’s Jay Gilmore and Beyond The Game’s Rick Horrow, showed the third jersey to their viewers on air. Add that to the regular coverage we received from the Sun Sentinel and the Miami Herald and other local television stations, and its clear that SSE was all over the news last week.

That said, our job is to continue the momentum this week when the Panthers return home from their two-game road trip to face the Colorado Avalanche on Wednesday. Prior to the game, Stu and Cliff will host their first town hall meeting where they will unveil two key initiatives, and also take questions from fans.

The Town Hall will take place at 6:30 p.m. in the Chairman’s Club, and I strongly encourage everyone to attend.

But for now, I plan on taking the rest of my Sunday to spend some time with my family, prepare for the week ahead, and reflect on a historic Thanksgiving Week at the “Center of it All.”

Thanks for reading and go Panthers.
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ABOUT MICHAEL YORMARK
SSE President & CEO

Since joining Sunrise Sports & Entertainment in September of 2003, Michael R. Yormark has guided the organization into a new era of growth and success.  For his efforts, devotion and dedication to SSE and the Florida Panthers, he was promoted to the position of President on Aug. 13, 2007.

Yormark and his staff have worked diligently to build and re-brand Florida Panthers L.L.L.P. into Sunrise Sports & Entertainment, a first-class sports and entertainment company, and to ensure that the BankAtlantic Center lives up to its reputation as the “Center of it All” in South Florida. SSE serves as an umbrella for a diverse portfolio of operating entities that includes the BankAtlantic Center, the Florida Panthers, incredible ICE, Sawgrass Live presented by BankAtlantic and the Oz real estate development project.

Yormark has built SSE into a comprehensive company with its values rooted in innovative marketing and public relations strategies, first-rate customer and client services, aggressive sales and diverse revenue pursuits. For that reason, Yormark and his staff were able to grow sponsorship sales significantly in a touch economy, maintain an average attendance of over 15,500 for Panthers games, renew over 90-percent of season ticket holders on an annual basis, and sell out all premium suite inventory (suites and clubs) for five straight years running.

In addition, Yormark has overseen dramatic improvements to the BankAtlantic Center in the last few years including two Las Vegas-style outdoor marqees’ and two huge Lobby Vision LED boards inside the arena’s lobby. He has also spearheaded an innovative sponsorship activation strategy that included the creation of his Brand Activation Team and led to the development of the Publix Kids Korner, IT’s Sugar Sweet Spot and various other branded destinations that are the first of their kind in the professional sports industry.

Yormark has been consistently recognized for his and the
company’s considerable success through national awards and exposure such as the SportsBusiness Journal’s Forty Under 40 Award, the Stanley Cup of Business, the City of Sunrise Business Leader Award, the South Florida Businss Journal’s Business of the Year Award Nomination, profiles in Newsweek magazine, Sports Illustrated and on CNBC, a top 12 worldwide ranking for the BankAtlantic Center in Pollstar Magazine, an Arena of the Year Nomination from Pollstar and more.


Yormark has also dedicated considerable time to the South Florida community including acting as President of the Sunrise Foundation, sitting on the board of the Boys & Girls Club of Broward County and being a member of the Young President’s Organization.

That said, Yormark continues to expand the business and build the SSE brand through projects such as the expansion of incredible ICE and the development of the area surrounding the BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise through Oz.
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