Raymond James scores a big win at the Super Bowl

Senior executives at Raymond James Financial Inc. are entitled to a little end zone celebration of their own this weekend as Super Bowl LV is being played in their backyard of Tampa Bay at the eponymous Raymond James Stadium.

The story of this year’s big game is the ebullient kid, Patrick Mahomes and his Kansas City Chiefs, versus the ungrizzled veteran — and perhaps the greatest quarterback of all time — Tom Brady and his Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Can Mahomes win back-to-back Super Bowls at the wee age of 25? Will Brady, 43, win a seventh Super Bowl before he files to collect Social Security benefits?

Either way, Raymond James executives and the firm’s 8,000 financial advisers will perhaps be mentally spiking the ball every time the game breaks for a commercial and announcers identify the stadium and where the game is being played.

After all, Raymond James renewed a $3.2 million-a-year deal in 2016 to retain the naming rights to Raymond James Stadium through 2027 — and that deal has clearly paid off in marketing and raising the firm’s profile.

The average cost for a 30-second ad for the Super Bowl has skyrocketed over the decades, according to Business Insider, with such an ad in 2019 on average costing $5.25 million.

And this is not the first time Raymond James, which is based across the bay in St. Petersburg, Fla., has seen the benefits of the long-term decision to buy the naming rights of the local stadium. The firm first secured naming rights to the stadium in 1998.

Since then, two other Super Bowls have been played there: XXXV in 2001 and XLIII in 2009. The Baltimore Ravens, led by Ray Lewis, shellacked the New York Giants 34 to 7 in the former, while the Pittsburgh Steelers beat the Arizona Cardinals 27 to 23 in the latter. Santonio Holmes was the MVP of that contest.

Officials at Raymond James declined to talk about the Super Bowl and Raymond James Stadium. But in an email, a Raymond James spokesperson wrote: “While our branding focus is first on supporting financial adviser brands in their communities, the global exposure of the big game being played in Raymond James Stadium will equate to tens of millions of dollars of brand exposure and a meaningful benefit to our long-term relationship with the Bucs.”

Touchdown! Enjoy the game, folks.

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