Commercial Affairs is the department responsible for the promotion and sales of the NHL and its teams.
It also handles the licensing and commercial rights for the league’s brands.
Commercial Affairs members are paid on a per-game basis, according to the NHL, and include the owners and league executives, as well as other departments and offices.
It’s been the department that most closely aligns with NHL commissioner Gary Bettman’s vision for the game’s commercial landscape.
The department’s mission statement says it “helps make the NHL a better place to play and to enjoy sports in the world.”
Commercial Affairs was founded in 1999 as a separate division of the League Office, the governing body for NHL teams, to serve as a conduit for all NHL commercial interests, including sponsorship, advertising and other business transactions.
In addition to its core business, the department has an international branch to serve the interests of the National Hockey League and its partners around the world.
In its first six years, the agency handled more than 2,500 commercial agreements with more than 30 NHL teams.
Commercial affairs members, who are paid per game, can buy up to $20,000 in sponsorship deals with teams and NHL players each year.
It is a source of pride to see some of the teams who have paid through the nose for commercial rights.
This season, teams including the Toronto Maple Leafs and Pittsburgh Penguins received more than $60 million in deals, according the NHL.
“Commercial Affairs has been at the forefront of the development of the current NHL commercial landscape,” said Gary Bettmann, NHL commissioner.
“We have seen the success of the commercial rights deals that have come out of our Commercial Affairs office and are in our offices across the league.”
In his first year as NHL commissioner, Bettman has overseen the expansion of the league, including the introduction of the Stanley Cup Playoffs and the All-Star Game.
“It is great to see that we are reaching our goal of having a successful commercial partnership with the NHL,” Bettman said in an email to reporters.
“There is an incredible amount of work ahead of us and we are very excited to be able to continue to grow our partnership with our partners.
We are looking forward to sharing our vision for commercial partnerships with our members and the fans of the game.”
The league has been one of the most active players in promoting the rights of players, and Bettman was on hand to watch as a player was inducted into the Professional Hockey Writers Association Hall of Fame.
The league is also working to ensure that the league can continue to attract the best talent in the sport, including NHL Players Association president David Andrews, who is on a five-year contract worth $1.2 million a year.
“I’m very proud of what we’ve accomplished with the players in our locker room and the work that’s been done in the commercial realm,” Andrews said.
“The league is working very hard to ensure we have the best players in the game, and that’s what we are doing with our commercial partners.”
Bettman is also on the committee that has proposed new, higher-profile television deals for the NHL Network, which has more than 10 million subscribers in more than 160 countries and is a cornerstone of the expansion effort.
The new deal is expected to go into effect in 2019.