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State agency reaches ad deal with Pacers

– Indiana’s business recruitment agency will have its marketing slogan painted on the home court of the Indiana Pacers as part of a new advertising deal with the team.

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. has signed a deal with the Pacers for sponsoring the basketball court inside Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Instead of the agency’s name being put on the court, its slogan “A State that Works” will appear in front of the home and visiting team benches, according to the Indianapolis Business Journal.

The deal follows a decision by NBA owners this summer to allow advertising on the sidelines.

Besides the sponsorship revenue, Pacers officials see the deal as a way of also helping promote the state, said Todd Taylor, the team’s senior vice president and chief sales and marketing officer.

“If this campaign increases the state’s brand and helps draw more business here, that gives us more potential clients to sell sponsorships, suites and club seats to,” Taylor said. “... This deal reinforces our brand and their brand. We’re the only NBA team with the name of the state where we play on our jersey.”

The Pacers and IEDC officials declined to release the agreement’s financial details.

The deal with the Pacers comes weeks after the quasi-governmental development agency started running promotional ads through December on a video board in New York City’s Times Square.

“While the IEDC has occasionally advertised with sports teams, this is the first time the IEDC has partnered with a team in this capacity with the goal of increasing exposure and brand lift for the state,” agency spokeswoman Katelyn Hancock said.

The Pacers deal includes advertising time on the digital scorer’s table board between the two team benches, the digital ribbon board that encircles the arena’s seating area, goal post pads, and logos on the backdrop for Pacers players’ and coaches’ interviews at the fieldhouse.

“When you put all that together, that’s what really makes it work,” Taylor said. “It’s a comprehensive retail and branding message.”