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Comets Honored for Growth

by Mark Caswell, Jr.

Jul 9, 2015 American Hockey League President and CEO David Andrews has announced the winners of the league’s annual Team Business Services awards, recognizing outstanding achievements in a variety of categories including ticket sales, community service and fan experience. These awards were announced Wednesday evening at a gala reception during the Board of Governors’ Annual Meeting at Hilton Head Island, S.C.

As part of its Team Business Services program, the AHL honored one club from each conference for top revenue growth in four areas during this past season: overall ticket sales, season-ticket sales, group-ticket sales and corporate sponsorship sales. The Comets were named winners for season-ticket sales growth in the Western Conference along with the Albany Devils in the Eastern Conference. The winners in overall ticket sales revenue growth were the Hartford Wolf Pack (Eastern) and the Grand Rapids Griffins (Western). The Hartford Wolf Pack (Eastern) and the Lake Erie Monsters (Western) earned the awards for group-ticket sales growth, and the Syracuse Crunch (Eastern) and Chicago Wolves (Western) were recognized for their corporate sponsorship sales growth.

Additionally, teams from each conference were selected for excellence in the areas of digital media, community relations and fan experience. The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (Eastern) and Grand Rapids Griffins (Western) were honored for digital media excellence; the Hershey Bears (Eastern) and Charlotte Checkers (Western) earned the nods for exceptional community relations efforts; and the Lehigh Valley Phantoms (Eastern) and Iowa Wild (Western) were recognized for outstanding fan experience at home games.

The AHL also honored several teams and individuals for their efforts during the 2014-15 season at the league’s Marketing Meeting in Scottsdale, Ariz., last month, including the Chicago Wolves as the sponsorship sales department of the year and the Lake Erie Monsters as the ticket sales department of the year.

The Rochester Americans were recognized for unique ticket sales promotion or theme night (“Boy Scouts Salesmanship Merit Badge”); the St. John’s IceCaps were selected for unique game operations, community relations or social media promotion (“IceCaps Street Team”); and the Toronto Marlies were given the award for unique sponsorship package or entitlement (“Legoland Discovery Centre Partnership”).

In operation since 1936, the AHL continues to serve as the top development league for all 30 National Hockey League teams. More than 88 percent of today’s NHL players are American Hockey League graduates, and for the 14th year in a row, more than 6 million fans attended AHL games across North America in 2014-15.

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