JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- They're the folks who manage Jacksonville's entertainment facilities: EverBank Field, the Baseball Grounds, the Arena. They're the folks who work to bring the big acts to town.
For almost 20 years, a company called SMG has had that job. Now, another company, Global Spectrum, wants a shot at it.
Each company has submitted proposals to the city. And Action News has obtained copies of those proposals.
First, you have SMG, a company familiar to Jacksonville having operated the city's entertainment facilities since 1991. Then you have newcomer, Global Spectrum, a Philadelphia-based company who says it can breathe new life into Downtown Jacksonville.
When asked, "Why Jacksonville?" Todd Glickman with Global Spectrum replied, "It's a gem. Facilities of this magnitude don't often come out. So when they do, we really want to be a part of it."
The two companies have very different proposals. SMG is drastically slashing its fees, from $1.2 million to $150,000.
SMG President and CEO Wes Wesley issued this statement to Action News saying, “As outlined in its response, SMG is committed to being a good steward of the city’s resources by proposing a robust, competitive proposal that will not only provide the city with significant financial savings and increased revenue opportunities, it will also continue to elevate Jacksonville’s sports and entertainment offerings and expand the company’s community engagement. SMG is excited about the potential to renew and refresh its relationship with Jacksonville and to continue the partnership among the city, the community and SMG. I am committed to Jacksonville as we work together for a great future for the city and your facilities."
Global Spectrum is offering a base management fee of $300,000, but promising to make a $1.5 million. investment to improve the facilities and lure in larger acts.
Glickman said, "Our sense, is when we're looking at the complex here, that it's really been under-served."
SMG may have the upper hand in the bid. The Jaguars and the City must agree on a management company and the Jags have already chosen SMG. But the deal's not done yet. Mayor Alvin Brown still has to sign off on it.
If you recall, this is the same contract which caused a rift between the city and Jags owner, Shad Khan.
Last month, the city's General Counsel wrote a letter to Khan threatening to terminate the team's lease at EverBank for backing SMG.
Turned out, it was all a misunderstanding, for which the Mayor apologized.