Exclusive interview: Lara Price on Sixers’ “new” logo
Posted by Ricky - Sixers4guidos on June 23, 2009
As promised this is a great day for all of us old school loving Sixers fans, following the official announcement of the return to the old logo.
In related news, here is the exclusive interview I did with Lara Price, Sixers’ senior vice president of business operations.
Remember, as Sixers4guidos revealed in January, she was the first to announce, to a group of season ticket holders, that Sixers were ‘going retro’, switching permanently to the old classic uniforms and logos in the 2009/2010 season.
While we all should give credit the franchise for listening to the fans and taking this wise decision, I would like to publicly thank Eric Blankenship, Sixers’ marketing vice president, that had a key role in the process of making this comeback possible.
I’ve been in contact with Eric for a pretty long time and he was always supportive in this ‘battle’: he immediately said to me that he was a fan of the old unis/logos, that in the front office there were fellow “old schoolers” (also at the top…) and definitely pushed me keeping the petition & the ‘lobbying’ activity going.
Bottom line, the franchise takes into great consideration fans’ opinions and feelings, which is is less obvious than you might think (LOL).
But let’s listen to mrs Price.
(S4G) My blog, Sixers4guidos, last year started an online petition to bring the old Sixers uniforms back. More than 130 fans from all over the world signed it and the word was spread all around the Internet: evidently a lot of Sixers fans cared. Reactions after the news of the switch were pretty much enthusiastic, 90% were like “about time”… How did the feelings of fans affect your decision? Did you make any survey, poll, market research before you took it? In case, what were the results saying?
(PRICE) We always appreciate the input from our fans and season-ticket holders. We take a proactive stance when it comes to surveying them so we can accurately gauge their opinion on a great number of topics, which includes our uniforms and logo.
As a result, we believe we made decisions pertaining to those elements that will be very well-received both locally and nationally.
I know for sure that Ed Stefanski is a fan of the old unis. Did he play any role in the decision of “going retro”? And Snider/Luukko?
Mr. Snider, Peter Luukko and Ed Stefanski all had major input and were very supportive of the decision to return to the traditional red, white and blue logo. Additionally, it is important to acknowledge that the NBA and Adidas were also very helpful as we went through the design and approval process.
(great ! thank everybody !!)
Can we now safely say that changing the uniforms’ colours and the logo wasn’t exactly a smart move? (NOTE: maybe it paid back in terms of revenues, but I don’t care…). I don’t recall Lakers wearing black jerseys, or Knicks adding gold to their logo, so don’t you agree that Sixers, like Celtics, Lakers, Knicks etc, are such a storied franchise that they wouldn’t need to follow “fashion” trends but they should stick to their glorious tradition? (I’m asking also because next winter among the trendy colours there will be purple, and I am scared…)
Very rarely do teams go through their entire existence without altering their logo or implementing changes to their color scheme to reflect the times. For example, the Knicks and Celtics adopted black as a primary part of their uniform or logos at various points, while the Pistons changed their logo altogether before returning to a modified version of an earlier version.
Our previous black, silver, gold, red and blue logo was very popular for many, many years but at this point in our franchise’s history – coming off of our 60th Anniversary – we were ready to make a change to our traditional logo.
(have to check about the other franchises, this research could be interesting. Our logo with black, gold etc MIGHT have been popular for a while but sucked big time, I’m sorry)
Can you anticipate something about the look of the 2009-2010 uniforms? Will they look 100% like the old ones or will something be changed/restyled? In case, what? (please make sure that whoever styled the unis of the ‘Shawn Bradley era’ does NOT take part to this process..)
Again, our uniforms will be a modern interpretation of traditional uniforms featuring the red, white and blue color scheme. We will wear white uniforms at home and red uniforms on the road with no alternate uniform for the 2009-10 season.
(sweet to hear)
Let’s talk $ a little bit, if you don’t mind. How much does the total of unis sold count in terms of revenues for the franchise (% on the total of merchandise turnover and/or overall figures, if available: number of jerseys sold per year, total of $ made out of those)?
Per team policy, those are figures that we do not discuss publicly.
(uhm, ok. I won’t complain since this is a day of joy !)
THANK YOU MRS PRICE, THANK YOU ERIC, THANK YOU SIXERS !
Now let’s do the same with the uniforms :-)
(UPDATE: reading Kate Fagan’s article, you gotta love Stefanski’s words…
Stefanski said the organization reached out to fans and received an “overwhelming” response to return to the old logo and uniforms.
We guys were “overwhelming”. How cool is that ??)