The CFP national championship game is set for SoFi Stadium next January.Los Angeles Sports and Entertainment Commission
The College Football Playoff has chosen RevelXP to reimagine its hospitality program — from sales and marketing to a more robust game day — by the time the national championship game rolls into SoFi Stadium next January.
Exclusive entertainment throughout the weekend and new party spaces inside the $5 billion venue will give fans several new options for high-end fan experiences at college football’s marquee event.
RevelXP, which won a competitive bid process for the CFP’s business, will carry the designation of official premium experience provider for the title game as part of a multiyear agreement.
The agency is a business within Winston-Salem, N.C.-based Teall Sports & Entertainment, Ben Sutton’s collection of companies that focuses on the fan experience across a variety of properties and has deep roots in the college space.
RevelXP’s deal with the CFP includes sales, marketing and operation of Playoff Premium, the program that manages suite and ticket hospitality for the playoff’s championship starting with the 2023 title game in Los Angeles.
Sutton said he has lofty expectations for growing Playoff Premium into “an offering that is unlike anything before it” in the college space and “will rival anything you can get at a Super Bowl,” he said.
Those expectations extend beyond the fan experience to the sales side as well. Sutton said he expects all of the Playoff Premium packages for Los Angeles to sell out by this summer, a much more aggressive timeline than the CFP’s sales agencies have had in the past.
As many as four separate agencies have sold Playoff Premium in the past, including Colonnade Group, Dallas Fan Fare, PrimeSport, and Quint-Events. RevelXP will be the exclusive sales agency going forward.
Consolidating the number of agencies selling official CFP packages was a major motivation behind selecting a single Playoff Premium partner.
Those old sales cycles typically got started during the football season, but didn’t really hit their stride until the week before the game, when the two teams in the championship game were known.
“We’re not going to wait and see who wins and then have this mad scramble at the end,” Sutton said. “We’re going to start out with the 500 best seats in the house, plus something like 110 suites, and then we’ll build out from there.”
The CFP in the past has made about 3,000 tickets available as part of premium hospitality packages, as well as the majority of suites in the venue. That number is not expected to change right away, but it could be a consideration in future years.
CFP Executive Director Bill Hancock has repeatedly said that the event prides itself on distributing the vast majority of its tickets to the two participating schools so that the in-game experience doesn’t become too corporate.
The CFP earlier this year issued an RFP for its Playoff Premium program, and Hancock said several agencies submitted proposals. RevelXP emerged “because the depth of their relationships in college sports is second to none,” Hancock said.
“We have operated a corporate hospitality program beginning with the first CFP in 2015,” Hancock said. “We reviewed the structure over the past several months and decided it would be best to consolidate [the number of sales agencies down to one]. Revel was one of several companies that responded to our request for proposals. Their expertise and experience in the college space made the difference.”
Sutton formed RevelXP from the acquisitions of Colonnade Group, Tailgate Guys and Complex Sports. From those beginnings of about 25 school relationships around premium fan experiences and game-day tailgating, RevelXP has grown its college client base to 70 schools.
Winning the CFP business “is the biggest partnership since we formed this business,” Sutton said.
Just last week, RevelXP CEO Ray DeWeese, President Tracy White, Teall CMO Lizzie Roediger and Chief People Officer Kelli Hilliard toured SoFi Stadium to identify hospitality options.
RevelXP also is establishing a senior vice president level position that will oversee the CFP relationship.
“We’re building an entire team around this,” Sutton said.