Building on a base of 10,000 season-seat owners, the Senators had 16 sellouts for an average attendance of 18,379 this season — up 109 per game from 2009-10. The club had also achieved its highest season-seat renewal rate by the end of the initial phase of this year’s renewal campaign. As of March 31, the club was nine percentage points ahead of season-seat renewals at the same stage last year, which saw a franchise record 90 per cent renewal rate.
“There are many factors that have helped spark our fans to renew their seats for next season,” said Cyril Leeder, president of Senators Sports & Entertainment. “Most importantly, we’ve seen from surveys and our in-person Hot Stove receptions that fans are excited about what they’ve seen on the ice in the last 25 games and what the future looks like. They believe we are on the right track by building a team around our core of veterans, including new goaltender Craig Anderson
, and developing and drafting talented young players.”
In addition to the record renewal rate, the fan support has allowed the Senators organization to achieve gains in a number of areas that are vital to business success. The following are highlights from the 2010-11 season:
- Individual game attendance increased by an average 109 fans per game, for a total season increase of 4,464.
- There were 16 sellouts at Scotiabank Place during the 2010-11 season, up from 12 in 2009-10.
- Corporate advertising revenue increased by eight per cent, with gains coming from a combination of national, regional and local partnerships.
- Broadcast viewership averaged 160,000 this season, up 18 per cent from 2009-10. The peak game this season, Dec. 26 versus the Pittsburgh Penguins, registered an audience of more than 325,000.
- The 2010-11 season marked the first time in team history that all 82 Senators games were broadcast on live television.
- Digital content consumption from the Senators website, www.ottawasenators.com, is up 100 per cent from last year.
- The Senators renewed Molson Coors, one of its largest corporate partners, to a five-year agreement.
Leeder added that fans are also excited about getting priority access to the 2012 NHL All-Star Game and many new initiatives the club announced for season-seat owners. “We are doing more than ever to recognize the loyalty of our season-seat owners and create new benefits that will appeal to current and prospective fans.
“This year we are have introduced a new VIP flexible benefits program designed to allow season-seat owners to select benefits only available to them,” added Leeder. “The program includes more than 60 VIP privileges to choose from, including autographed merchandise, videoboard messages and in-arena advertising, as well as experience-driven benefits like Ride the Zamboni, hockey camps and skating at Scotiabank Place.
“We also have new seating plans such as food-inclusive packages that allow fans to purchase two seats and get a second pair for half price, and a new 20th anniversary section, where tickets are priced as low as $20 per game,” said Leeder. “In addition, we have added a 12-month payment plan to make it easier for fans to budget and pay for their season seats.
“These benefits are in addition to the season-seat owner’s low price guarantee and savings of up to 32 per cent off the game cost,” noted Leeder. “We’ve also continued the popular offer of free parking to all full-season seat owners that have been with us for more than five years, as well as half-season seat owners with us for more than 10 years. Season-seat owners will continue to be invited to exclusive events for business networking, chalk talks with Bryan Murray and our key hockey personnel, and a new hockey legends series.”