NBA to offer Starting 5 hobby shop promotion

The NBA, in conjunction with Topps and Upper Deck, will sponsor a hobby shop promotion this spring that will send collectors on a search for cards of five of the league’s top stars.

The Starting 5 promotion will be conducted at participating hobby shops from March 17-April 13. Promotional materials within each store will list the five players highlighted in the promotion. Collectors will have to purchase packs of 2007-08 NBA-licensed trading cards in the hopes of finding cards of all five players. Once they’ve completed the task, they’ll receive a prize from the store that will be provided by Topps and Upper Deck. They’ll also be entered into a drawing for a $20 gift certificate, provided by the NBA that can be used at the participating hobby shop, as well as a grand-prize drawing from among all stores for a trip for two to the 2008 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot. In addition, one participating store will be awarded an in-store appearance by an NBA player.

Participation is limited to the first 200 stores that apply to the league. The signup period for stores runs from Feb. 1-March 1. To enroll, stores must send their store name, address, phone, contact person and an e-mail address for that person to the NBA via fax at (212) 754-6414 or via an e-mail to nbacards@nba.com. For more information regarding the promotion, stores can log on to www.nba.com/starting5promotion.

Stores that participate in the promotion will receive a kit that includes posters, storage folders for collectors to use to display their five cards and individual prizes for collectors. Stores will receive enough materials for 50 customers to participate in the promotion.

“We feel this is a great promotion because it will promote excitement, entice people to purchase cards and increase sales of NBA trading cards,” said Lisa Goldberg, the league’s director of trading card licensing. “It’s a compelling, customer-friendly campaign. It’s easy for shops to execute and everybody gets something just for participating. It’s a great time period for us as well, because it’s right before the playoffs and there will be a lot of excitement for the sport.”

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