KP Sports Inc Could Be Foreclosed On

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KP Sports was among the pioneer companies offering college sports marketing partnerships and multi-media rights sales services. Established by former University football player Kevin Plank, the business began operating out of his grandmother’s basement.

Kingsley-Pierson-Rive Valley girls’ basketball practice sessions began tentatively for its inaugural season but quickly turned into excitement and high fives after week two of practice.

Under Armour®

Products designed by this brand are engineered and built for the purpose – of improving performance, assisting athletes in reaching their full potential, and making a positive difference in the world. Their dedication to performance sets them apart from the competition. Company founder Kevin Plank recognized early that sports was moving toward digital platforms and invested heavily in building out an ecosystem consisting of UA Record, MyFitnessPal, and Endomondo that provides more value to customers and facilitates significant brand growth.

Under Armour has long made sustainability part of its corporate strategy and its dedication to social justice a cornerstone. They have given over $100 million in charitable donations since 2009 alone, including working alongside organizations like Nancy Lieberman Charities to provide access to sports in urban communities – helping over 1,000 young people experience its transformative power first-hand.

Under Armour made history when it became the first major apparel brand to allow student-athletes to profit from their name, image, and likeness. This unprecedented move upended decades-long assumptions that compensating students would interfere with their education or competition; today, these student-athletes can earn money through autograph signings, opening their businesses, teaching camps or lessons, and featuring in advertisements campaigns.

Under Armour is using its partnerships with top athletes to spread its message of empowering youth athletes. Their new campaign, Be the Athlete No One Saw Coming, seeks to bolster confidence among young athletes and embrace individuality instead of comparisons.

Nippert Stadium was filled with memories as University of Cincinnati football took on Miami (OH). Their heritage uniforms paid a nod to previous teams who once competed there and demonstrated UA’s dedication to producing quality products.

Under Armour has long been an innovator in performance apparel and shoes, and this year, they have expanded their efforts by unveiling a groundbreaking series of basketball sneakers explicitly designed to empower women players. Additionally, Under Armour joined forces with the City of Columbia Parks and Recreation Foundation in Atlanta, Georgia, to build an outdoor basketball court at Thomasville Recreation Center – part of their ongoing UA Freedom initiative that gives student-athletes access to the sport they love in order to excel academically and personally.

Learfield Sports®

This company serves as a primary intermediary for brands and media companies seeking to connect with athletic departments and manages multimedia rights for over 200 schools – most notably Power Five schools and several of the nation’s top collegiate programs, as well as smaller schools and conferences. Their staff exceeds 1,000 people, and headquarters are located in Dallas, Texas.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic triggered by NCAA sanctions resulted in a precipitous decline in college sports’ value, this company has been under intense pressure to reduce its debt levels relative to EBITDA or adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (AETD&A). Although recent improvements were seen, its debt level still represents unsustainable debt levels relative to its adjusted EBITDA or earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization.

Learfield’s lenders have put the company on a course toward restructuring and have begun reaching out to school partners with offers that align more closely with their financial interests. These hybrid or variable structure deals reduce Learfield risk while keeping schools financially invested in the monetization of their rights.

Some of the nation’s leading schools, including UCLA and Florida Gators, have already signed revised contracts with Learfield that are expected to help lighten its billion-dollar debt load while positioning it for long-term sustainability. It shows that current lenders are willing to allow the restructuring of debt without resorting to bankruptcy as a solution.

Learfield IMG College typically provides its school partners with a guaranteed annual payment in exchange for selling various sponsorship and multimedia rights, which may even exceed actual revenue generated through those agreements. Under UCLA’s original contract negotiated before merging with IMG College, that guarantee totaled approximately $17 million at the end of its 10-year deal; even after NCAA lifted event limits and operations resumed at UCLA, Learfield kept claiming this promise!

Multimedia Rights

Over the last two years, college athletics has received considerable media coverage due to sponsorship and name, image, and likeness deals; however, multi-media rights (MMR) revenue is steadily growing at an equally dramatic pace. Most MMR revenue goes to third-party sellers like Learfield IMG; with its $1 billion debt payment due within one year, its collapse could have devastating repercussions for intercollegiate sports.

Sportico conducted an exhaustive D-I public records request campaign and managed to obtain royalty reports marked as confidential from Learfield IMG that reveal how much revenue their university partners like Nebraska may expect to gain after recovering their guaranteed rights fees from MMR contracts with Learfield. These royalties represent what programs can expect to net from MMR deals after covering any upfront guaranteed rights fees that might have been due.

JMI Sports is an established media rights and venue development firm. Their services include managing multimedia rights for college sports facilities, representing sponsorship sales agencies in sales agencies’ representation contracts, and offering highly sought-after project management expertise for the development of these facilities. Clients of the company include Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Pitt, Harvard, Georgia, Columbia (with Learfield), and Notre Dame, as well as several joint-venture properties. It also manages multi-media rights for various conferences. Coach Lee has been KP’s Head Football Coach for 17 years and previously at Curry College and Walpole High. In 2017-18, he will coach the Hockomock League Champion Warriors football team and the 9th Junior Warrior skills camp, respectively.