Saturday, September 20, 2008

It's All About the Benjamins

Right outside of Wrigley Field in Chicago are a number of buildings and rooftops visible from inside the stadium, for both live audiences and those watching on TV. One of them is the "Budweiser Building," a bright rooftop that A-B has used to run a giant billboard for Budweiser since 2004. The building has been sold, and the new owners are using a paperwork excuse to kick Budweiser out, and open the space back up to the highest bidder. In 2004, A-B agreed to pay the previous building's owner about $350,000 a year for the space, with a contract that extended thru Feb 2009. I can only imagine what the new owners think they can get for the space now. From the story in the Chicago Tribune:
The new owners failed to send an invoice for September's lease payment to the Chicago office of Jef Schmidt, Anheuser-Busch's director of marketing, according to the brewer's lawsuit. Schmidt contacted the owner's attorney, who then faxed an invoice, but the letter lacked a contact phone, fax and federal tax identification number needed before a check could be cut, according to the beer maker's lawsuit.
The new owner is saying A-B defaulted because they paid their bill 5 days late, which they only did because they didn't have any information on WHERE to send the money. The building owner just wants to be able to open it up, make it available to whomever will pay the most money each month.

What it used to look like from inside the stadium:

Now the rooftop is all covered up: