SportsLine.com, MVP.com Form $120 Million Pact
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The new sports destination will pay SportsLine.com Inc. (SPLN) $120 million to be an exclusive e-commerce partner. MVP.com also received an unspecified equity interest in the CBS SportsLine subsidiary.
MVP.com was created in partnership with Benchmark Capital, Freeman Spogli & Co., Galyan's Trading Company, retired John Elway, Michael Jordan and Wayne Gretzky. SportsLine Founder and CEO Michael Levy will serve on the board of directors of MVP.com, which includes Elway as the chairman, Jordan, Gretzky, Benchmark partner David Beirne, Freeman Spogli partner Ron Spogli and former Sears, Roebuck & Co. Senior Executive Vice President John Costello, who has been appointed chief executive officer.
MVP.com will also receive $85 million in advertising, over a period of four years from CBS Corp. in exchange for an equity stake.
Under the proposed terms of the agreement, MVP.com will acquire and assume all responsibility for, and cost of operations of the co-branded stores
"We intend to put the same effort into this venture that we put into our athletic careers, in hopes that it will result in great success and growth for MVP.com," Gretzky said. We are approaching MVP.com as a team effort, and I very much look forward to working with John, Michael, and the rest of the new company."
SportsLine.com includes more than 400,000 pages of multimedia sports information, entertainment and merchandise.
In September, SportsLine.com bought TennisDirect.com in a $770,000 stock deal to offer consumers a line of about 10,000 tennis products in addition to an extensive assortment of merchandise and memorabilia.