Additional Coverage: Gallery | Press Conference
November 13, 2017 – The Charlotte Hornets and LendingTree today announced a multi-year partnership in which the Charlotte-based online loan marketplace’s logo will appear on the team’s jerseys, effective immediately. LendingTree also becomes a Founding Level Partner of the organization and the Official Loan Shopping Partner of the Charlotte Hornets. The Hornets will wear the LendingTree logo on their jerseys for the first time on Wednesday, November 15, when the team debuts its new Classic Edition uniform in an 8 p.m. contest against the Cleveland Cavaliers that will be televised nationally on ESPN.
“We are incredibly excited to partner with LendingTree and have its logo on our uniforms,” said Hornets Sports & Entertainment President & COO Fred Whitfield. “LendingTree is a company that shares our hometown and many of our values. We both aim to provide the best possible product for our consumers and constantly seek opportunities for advancement as we strive to be among the elite in our respective industries. In addition, we both understand and accept the importance of giving back to our community in Charlotte and across the Carolinas. We look forward to beginning our relationship with LendingTree and proudly displaying its logo alongside those of the Hornets and our owner’s Jordan Brand.”
Along with placement on all team uniforms, LendingTree will have fixed signage on the Spectrum Center concourse and on the venue’s mobile entry scanners, as well as digital signage on the scorer’s table, basket stanchion, center-hung scoreboard and 360 LED boards. LendingTree also receives entitlement of the new Hornets app, the team roster page on hornets.com and score updates on the team’s social media outlets. Additional advertising elements include banner ads and pre-roll video ads on hornets.com and spots on Hornets television broadcasts on FOX Sports Southeast and radio broadcasts on WFNZ.
The deal also includes a community component, as LendingTree becomes the title partner of the Hornets Hoops youth basketball program. The company will also launch the LendingTree Scholarship Program for youth to attend camps and the Lend-Some-Kicks Program, which donates shoes to youth. Additional elements of the partnership include hospitality opportunities and appearances by Hornets players, executives, Honey Bees and Hugo.
“As a Charlotte-based company rooted in innovation and empowerment, LendingTree is incredibly honored and excited to partner with our hometown team whose values closely align with our own,” said Doug Lebda, Founder and CEO of LendingTree. “This partnership unites two iconic and innovative brands to drive further success for the team, expand LendingTree’s reach, and serve the Carolina community in a more powerful and impactful way.”
Jersey sponsorships were approved as part of a three-year pilot program by the NBA Board of Governors in April 2016. The Hornets partnered with Excel Sports Management on the jersey patch opportunity.