A new Franco-centric packaging strategy is paying dividends for the Amgen Tour of California pro cycling race.

Looking to replicate the sponsorship model at the Tour de France, the May 13-20 race has restructured its sponsorship packages to provide more visibility for its top-tier jersey partners.

The effort has been a success, with the race posting a roughly 15 percent increase in sponsorship revenue over the 2011 event.

The tour this year has brought on two new jersey sponsors: Renewable energy supplier Exergy Development Group and Nissan North America, Inc., the latter of which stepped up from a lower-level partnership.

The crux of the packaging model: Provide prominent on-site and TV broadcast inventory to jersey sponsors while assigning ownership of specific on-site assets and activation platforms to lower-level partners.

“We had assets spread out among our big and small sponsors. We decided to group our more visible assets with jersey sponsors,” said John Greene, vice president of sponsorship sales with AEG, which owns and produces the event.

Case in point: The tour’s five jersey sponsors will receive dominate on-site exposure and TV visibility at the 2012 event. The final stage of the race this year will be broadcast live during a two-hour show on the NBC Sports Network.

Lower-level sponsors gain ownership of specific assets. For example, UnitedHealth Group, Inc. will title the Chairman’s Ride dinner as a B2B play to reach business decision-makers. The company also receives media inventory.

The race decided to restructure its sponsorship packages after all of its partnerships came up for renewal after the 2011 event, said Greene.

The company has since signed a multiyear deal with every partner, he said.

Amgen Tour of California Jersey Sponsors
Amgen Inc. Race Leader Jersey
Amgen’s Breakaway from Cancer Most Courageous Jersey
Exergy Development Group Most Aggressive Rider Jersey
Nissan North America, Inc. King of the Mountain Jersey
Rabobank, N.A.   Best Young Rider Jersey
Visit California Sprint Jersey