The UNC athletic department has announced a renewal of its contract with The Libman Company, which sells cleaning tools. The contract extension will go through the 2022-23 athletic season, and the partnership originally began in 2018.
UNC Athletic's Assistant Athletic Director for Marketing Michael Beale said Tar Heel Sports Properties has handled much of the negotiations with Libman.
“All of our multimedia rights are outsourced through Tar Heel Sports Properties, so they are the ones who have all of those direct conversations,” Beale said. “The contract is held with Tar Heel Sports Properties, so they have all of those details.”
With the existing partnership, Libman is known as the “Official Hardwood Floorcare Provider of Carolina Athletics.”
UNC is not the only North Carolina-based sports organization to partner with the company. The Charlotte Hornets have been sponsored by Libman since 2015, being one of several NBA franchises to affiliate with the company. The company is also affiliated with the Big Ten, as they first partnered with the conference in 2012.
“For us, they’re a national household brand,” Beale said. “They value UNC because of our large national fan base. They have partnered with multiple NBA and college teams by showcasing their products in game with the Libman 'Mop Crew' we have here.”
The “Mop Crew” cleans the courts at the Dean E. Smith Center during home basketball games, as they have done for other schools in college basketball under the same nickname. UNC Athletics has not yet revealed what game day cleaning operations will look like for the men’s basketball season, or any athletic program at UNC, if competition is played as scheduled during 2020-2021.
The company is based in the state of Illinois. According to its website, The Libman Company was deemed a “necessary industry” during the coronavirus outbreak in March, as it follows the instructions of Governor JB Pritzker as well as CDC guidelines for COVID-19. The website also stated that the company’s facilities are closed to outside customers.
UNC athletics has dealt with many changes due to COVID-19 in the last few months. Its programs suspended athletic activities after the campus experienced high spikes in positive cases after reopening. Activities resumed for men’s and women’s basketball, cross country, field hockey, volleyball and men’s and women’s soccer on Sunday, Aug. 23. The football team was allowed to resume practice the following day, while the remaining winter and spring sports resumed practices on Wednesday, Aug. 26.
“With all the involvement they have on the COVID front, it’s a great match for us,” Beale said.
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