WINSTON-SALEM, NC (DECEMBER 6, 2018) —Teall Sports & Entertainment, a private equity company based in Winston-Salem, NC; Atlanta, GA; and San Francisco, CA, has invested in Dallas and Denver-based Complex Sports and Entertainment, a company that partners with professional sports teams, college athletic departments and venue owners to create unique fan experiences year round. Founded in 2018, Complex’s services include venue marketing, booking and management in the tours, special events and ticketed events categories.
“We’re excited to join the Teall Sports & Entertainment family,” said Complex Sports and Entertainment President Mark Neifeld. “It became apparent very early-on that our new partners at Teall Sports & Entertainment were the best strategic partners that could help guide the long-term success of our company.”
“After building strong relationships with Ben Sutton, the partners at Teall, and leadership teams of Teall’s portfolio companies, we knew that this was the group of professionals that we wanted to align with,” Neifeld added. “Teall is already helping us realize the full potential for Complex. We’re excited about how this partnership will help us continue to bring new opportunities to our partners and the communities we serve.”
Complex’s veteran team of event and venue professionals provide venue sales, event booking and project management services , as well as produce a portfolio of owned content in each of the verticals the company markets. In 2019, Complex will launch several new event properties, including Stadium Blitz®, The Avalanche Rush and the Diehard Dash, and other properties including Experiology® and The Legacy Club. In October, Complex announced a partnership with the Collegiate Event and Facility Management Association (CEFMA) to align in efforts to promote growth and education across intercollegiate athletics.
Teall Chairman Ben C. Sutton, Jr., widely recognized as one of the most accomplished entrepreneurs and business leaders in the sports and entertainment industry, founded ISP Sports in 1992. After rapidly becoming the market leader in collegiate sports marketing, broadcast, publishing, sponsorship services, ticketing and stadium seating, ISP Sports merged into IMG College in 2010. Sutton, who became chairman and president of IMG College in 2010 and had served as chairman emeritus since September 2015, left IMG College in late 2016 to focus his efforts on Teall Sports & Entertainment.
“Complex Sports and Entertainment is the perfect complement to Teall’s other high-growth investments, which include Dyehard Fan Supply, Riddle & Bloom, Sunshine Beverages and Tailgate Guys,” Sutton said. “Complex is uniquely positioned to help professional sports teams, athletic departments and venue owners maximize the use of their facilities and engage fans year round like never before.”
“Like the other companies in Teall’s portfolio, our team will work hard to accelerate the growth track for Complex. It’s already on a great trajectory, and I look forward to working closely with Mark and his team,” Sutton added. “The investment in Complex is proof of our business model and reaffirms Teall’s plans to invest in companies where we can provide strategic value and the support they need for success.”
Since its founding in mid-2017, Teall has created Dyehard Fan Supply, an event and retail merchandise marketing and e-commerce company and acquired millennial-centered agency Riddle & Bloom, a specialized “Ideas and Access” agency that helps its clients market to the growing demographic of Next Generation consumers. Teall also became majority owner Sunshine Beverages, which produces, markets and sells a “better-for-you” energy beverage, branded Sunshine, and acquired a significant interest in Alabama-based Tailgate Guys, which provides turnkey hospitality packages to fans.
About Ben C. Sutton, Jr.
Ben C. Sutton, Jr. is founder and chairman of Teall Sports & Entertainment, a private equity company with investments in a portfolio of businesses including Riddle & Bloom (national next-gen marketing agency), Tailgate Guys (national market-leading hospitality company), Sunshine Beverages, and Dyehard Fan Supply (national sports/entertainment merchandising business).
Sutton, a graduate of Wake Forest University and law school, was previously Chairman and President of IMG College, which he founded as ISP Sports in 1992, essentially inventing the college media business as it is known today. By 2014 when he transitioned into the role of Chairman, IMG was the largest college sports company and sports/entertainment sales organization in America (SportsBusiness Journal). In addition to building the core businesses of IMG College into four national market-leading companies, he was largely responsible for the meteoric overall growth of IMG Worldwide, engineering the sale of the company in 2014 for $2.4 billion. IMG was the national market leader in Media, Licensing, Ticketing, and Stadium Seating, working with over 225 universities, conferences, NCAA, and College Football Playoff.
In addition to being named one of the most powerful sports executives in America, Sutton has received numerous distinctions including induction into the North Carolina Order of the Long Leaf Pine, the Wake Forest University Distinguished Alumni award, as well as induction into the North Carolina Sports, National Football Foundation, NACMA and SportsBusiness Journal Champions Halls of Fame. He is a trustee or director at Wake Forest University, White House Historical Association, United States Olympic Committee, Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation & Institute, National Football Foundation, and Naismith Basketball Foundation. The Sutton Family Foundation has invested over $40 million in philanthropic causes.
About Teall Sports & Entertainment
Teall Sports & Entertainment is a privately-held set of investments in innovative, high-growth potential lifestyle brands and services. The company’s leadership has extensive experience in sports, media, marketing, and entertainment, and the group provides its operating companies deep expertise in a number of disciplines: corporate strategy, organizational management, culture and training, financial strategy, employee operations, recruiting, and expert legal diligence.
Teall Sports & Entertainment is led by Ben C. Sutton, Jr. and an executive management team that built and expanded four national market-leading businesses in the college sports space: IMG College Multi-media, IMG College Seating, IMG College Licensing, and IMG Learfield Ticketing. Teall invests in complementary organizations that can strategically work together to realize greater value, sharing in expertise, thought leadership, and networks.
For more information, please visit TeallCapital.com.