Eli and Archie Manning, legendary father-and-son NFL quarterbacks (and proud BBQGuys investors) have officially joined the BBQGuys team! The grill’s been preheating on this one for a while, but we couldn’t possibly be more excited to welcome these new “Chief Commercial Makin’ Guys” to BBQGuys HQ. Wait, that can’t be right. Eli Manning… Archie Manning… Nope, it says right here: “as our marketing department.”
This is just the “beginning” with the “Big News” kick-off content video, part of the new BBQGuys Marketing campaign developed by Source. The Source team built a new narrative for the Manning family that will unfold in the coming weeks. “This innovative multi-level integrated media approach will allow BBQGuys to reach a whole new audience, said Larry Rothstein, President and founder of Source Communications. It really is an exciting time for the BBQGuys brand. We can’t reveal the rest but check back for updates and more content for the new campaign from BBQGuys, the very best in grillin’ and outdoor livin’!!
BBQGuys® is the leading e-commerce retailer of premium grills, BBQ smokers, and outdoor living products for both homeowners and professional builders. What began as a humble brick-and-mortar store in 1998 has since evolved into one of America’s fastest-growing private businesses — one that has served over one million happy customers nationwide. With an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau and annual recognition as a leader in the online space, BBQGuys has cemented itself as the most trusted voice in the grilling and outdoor living industry. Were you born to grill? Visit us at BBQGuys.com.
NEW YORK, Sept. 29, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Brand Velocity Partners (BVP), the innovative private equity firm that applies its best-in-class marketing and business development resources to supercharge growth for portfolio companies, today announced that it has acquired BBQGuys, the largest e-commerce platform of higher-end barbeque grills, grilling accessories, and outdoor kitchen products.
Since its founding in 2000, BBQGuys has established itself as the category’s leading e-commerce platform. The company’s impressive 27% annual growth over fifteen years has been driven by unmatched customer service, online content, and subject matter expertise; married with its scaled, sophisticated infrastructure that enables rapid order fulfillment.
As part of the transaction, BVP also acquired Blaze Outdoor Products, an affiliated company that designs and sells premium-quality barbeques and accessories. Blaze has experienced similarly remarkable adoption (averaging 50% annual growth over the last seven years), a testament to its superior value proposition coupled with its strong distributors supporting more than 1,100 retailers nationwide.
“BBQGuys has an entrenched and scalable position in this large, fragmented, growing market,” said BVP co-founder and managing partner, Steve Lebowitz. “The backyard is the new vacation spot. With the company’s market expected to grow from $9.7 billion in 2019 to over $11.7 billion by 2024, BBQGuys will benefit from a strong demand profile and secular tailwinds. We’re excited to partner with such a talented management team to build the brand.”
“BBQGuys has built a remarkable brand reputation among both consumers and professional builders, and it’s their commitment to quality, selection, and customer service that enables the company to thrive,” said Russ Wheeler, incoming CEO of BBQGuys and former president of Build.com. “Having spent a majority of the last decade growing Build.com into one of the leading interior home design e-commerce platforms, I’m extremely excited about BBQGuys’ potential to reshape and redefine the outdoor living lifestyle. Furthermore, I’m thankful to have a partner like BVP committed to building upon BBQGuys’ incredible track-record of innovation.”
“We started BVP to bring both an entrepreneurial and empathetic ‘eye’ to private equity. It allows us to better serve our portfolio companies and the people who make them special,” said BVP founding partner, Drew Sheinman. “Capital is a commodity that anyone can provide. We provide capital, but it’s our unique composition of creative marketing strategies and connections that can truly help sound businesses continue to develop as well-loved brands.”
BVP was founded in 2019 and is run by partners with deep experience across private equity, brand marketing, and business development.
BVP’s unique alchemy thrives with experience from managing partner Steve Lebowitz who combines more than twenty years of investment expertise with a disruptive approach to implementing value-add strategies; and founding partner Austin Ramos, a private equity veteran who has an extensive track record of building sustainable, scalable businesses through an operationally driven approach.
The firm’s partners also have extensive experience in brand marketing and business development. Founding partner Drew Sheinman has a storied career of brand innovation and new venture development across Endeavor (WME-IMG), Coca-Cola, Madison Square Garden, and the New York Mets; and partner Larry Rothstein through Source Communications, the nationally recognized full-service ad/marketing firm he founded, has led transformative activation programs for Amtrak, Subway, CohnReznick, Investors Bank, and Hewlett-Packard, among others.
Including BBQGuys, BVP has made three platform acquisitions within the past year. Recent portfolio additions include Original Footwear, a leading designer and manufacturer of footwear for the military, first responder, and consumer markets; and Magma Products, the largest designer and manufacturer of stainless steel barbeque grills for the Marine and RV markets.
The Manning family (Archie, Cooper, Peyton, and Eli)—along with NFL Hall of Famers LaDainian Tomlinson and Steve Hutchinson—and lifestyle entrepreneur Landyn Hutchinson joined in on the transaction as strategic investors with BVP.
Other influential investors bringing their expertise include Aberdeen Capital Management, ACE & Company, BPEA Private Equity, Cardinal Capital, The Cordish Companies, Darco Capital, Hermes GPE, and Landon Investments, LLC, among others. Whitehorse Capital provided term loan financing for the transaction as agent and sole lender in addition to investing in the equity.
About Brand Velocity Partners Brand Velocity Partners (BVP) is an innovative private equity firm focused on acquiring consumer and information service businesses well-positioned to benefit from BVP’s deep, in-house marketing and business development resources along with its influencer networks.
In partnership with BVP, Source Communications’ full-service agency develops and executes marketing plans for BVP portfolio companies. Portfolio companies also leverage BVP’s vast sports and entertainment networks to create accretive deals with athletes, teams, leagues, celebrities, and other businesses. In addition, BVP’s collection of industry leaders (the “Accelerators”) from different facets of marketing (e.g., digital, research, analytics, brand-building, behavioral decision making, and influencer connectivity) augment best-in-class solutions for BVP portfolio companies.
Accelerators include Whitney Johnson (one of the 50 leading business thinkers in the world as named by Thinkers50); Ian Schafer (co-founder & CEO of Kindred, founder and former CEO of award-winning global ad agency Deep Focus, and a world-recognized social media expert); Sanjay Sood (faculty chairman and professor of marketing and behavioral decision making at UCLA’s Anderson School of Management); and Edwin Wong (senior vice president at Vox Media, previous roles at Pinterest, Veoh, and Yahoo, and leading expert in digital consumer behavior).
Sports Marketing is a proven strategy to help establish presence in a market and demonstrate brand commitment to the team’s fans. Source uses sports marketing as a multiplier that tugs at the emotional connection and passion fans have for their teams to drive them to be your brand’s fans!
Utilizing ideation, valuation, negotiation, implementation, promotion and activation, Source develops customized holistic programs and integrated campaigns for any budget level. The sports multiplier can help brands enter new markets, increase awareness and help you achieve your goals.
Source has long-standing relationships with professional and collegiate teams and athletes. We have expertise with all leagues, venues and sports media and can build a customized program to put your brand in the game.
Click here to read more about the 9 misconceptions keeping brands away from sports marketing.
Source has been empowering brands and igniting consumer passions since 1983. Our unique blend of customized solutions informs, persuades, engages and ultimately drives transactions. Source has a deep understanding of the franchise marketing world, working with well-known brands like McDonalds and Buffalo Wild Wings. For the last 16 years we have applied this unique knowledge-base to manage over 5,500 franchise stores in 26 local markets for Subway Restaurants across the country.
Our experience and expertise across disciplines allows us to think and work 360o with brands at a national, regional and hyper-local level to maximize budgets and help achieve sales and marketing goals. We understand how to implement market wide programs to improve AUV and make transactions happen. To read more about how Source helped franchisees and the Subway Restaurants brand please click the button below.
Supporting your Brand Through Adversity and Uncertainty
The impact of COVID-19 pandemic for our society as a whole is widespread. This “rapid change event” has altered the way we think about healthcare, commerce, and social interaction. For business’ both big and small, it has created enormous disruption, uncertainty, and challenges for our clients. However, we believe in forward- thinking and that ideas can help usher in what is next and bring hopeful opportunities. Source has continued creating solutions that have helped our clients business through this event and continues to chart the comeback to growth and prosperity.
To see how these ideas have helped our clients please click the button below.
Despite social distancing during the COVID-19 outbreak, the desire to connect remains a fundamental human need. As consumers go online to fulfill this need, digital consumption is understandably on the rise and brands positioning themselves ahead of easing quarantine restrictions are taking note.
Of course, media consumption varies from audience to audience – though both stuck at home, the 20-something barista is using social media differently than the retiree grandmother. How are media consumption patterns differing across generations?
To read a more detailed analysis of media consumption during the COVID-19 outbreak and download an analysis of “Impact on Media Consumption” click the button below.
In the summer of 2019, Investors Bank debuted the official New York Giants Checking Account and “recruited” members to join the Big Blue Checking Crew. Source created an integrated marketing campaign, introducing the new checking account with Giants-branded debit card. The launch was promoted during on-site activations at Giants Training Camp, preseason and regular season Giants games. Brand ambassadors signed fans up to win Giants tickets and merchandise. An email campaign was created to follow up with leads to stay top of mind. To drive traffic into the branches, the street teams handed out a Giants branded mobile wallet with coupons that could be redeemed in-branch for Giants and Investors-branded tailgate coolers.
All game day and stadium assets promoted Giants Checking, including the LED ribbon, video pylons, Giants GameDay print ads. Broadcast assets included :30 radio spots and :30 TV spot featuring former NFL quarterbacks Boomer Esisaon and Phil Simms during the Giants postgame show and on MSG network. Source was able to secure added value communication to the Giants Season Ticketholders with inclusions in the season ticket mailer and gift mailer.
Additonal media, included live reads and radio spots on the Boomer & Gio show on WFAN, digital banners and video, social posts and OOH. In branch assets included POS materials and branch-wide apperances with former New York Giants players for an alumni weekend promotion.
Never Is Now is the nation’s principal event designed to explore and educate on
the contemporary drivers of anti-Semitism and all forms of hate. This year the
conference was held at the Javits Center in NYC, with over 1,800 attendees, 300
high-school students and several informative workshops.
Notable keynotes and guest speakers such as Bari Weiss from the
New York Times, Hamdi Ulukaya, Founder and CEO of Chobani, and Actor,
Screenwriter and Director Sacha Baron Cohen shared remarks and underscored the
importance of this annual event.
With opening remarks by Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO of ADL, who
shared this sobering update, “the American Jewish
community has not seen this level of anti-Semitism in mainstream political and
public discourse since the 1930s. Sadly, it is only being matched with
escalating levels of hate toward other minorities, too, including Latinos, the
disabled, Muslims, African-Americans, and the LGBT community.”
Source has always had strong support for the powerful
work of ADL to combat hate and anti-Semitism, especially through the Never is
Now Conference. The agency design team played a core role in developing
branding, a new conference logo, collateral, as well as digital and on-site
assets. Additonal advertising support was created that included, digital mobile,
social and print assets.
ADL and Source are proud of their collaborative
efforts to elevate the 2019 Never is Now Conference to make it the most
well-attended event of its kind. Bigotry, anti-Semitism, and hate never take a
day-off, we will continue to support ADL in “Fighting Hate for Good”.
Source created a first-of-its-kind partnership with Major League Baseball for top accounting and advisory firm, CohnReznick. As the presenting partner of the 2018 Winter Meetings in Las Vegas, this relationship also includes two unique video content series, The Business of Baseball and Front Office Focus.
2019 rolled in with some exciting news from the 14th Annual Davey Awards. Source received three silver awards at this international creative competition. The Davey focuses exclusively on honoring outstanding creative work from the best small agencies worldwide.