Beer has and will always be a top category in the sports/entertainment sponsorship field. Besides the sponsorship costs, properties actually make money by selling the product in venue. Granted they must 1st work out a deal with their respected concessionaire (Aramark, Centerplate are 2 of the largest). Other notable categories are Banks, Telecommunications, Auto and Soda. Federal regulations mandate that beer sponsorships are marketing related and are not tied to sales. Sell us the in-venue signage, associated media and brand themed areas in your proposals. The sales side is done in “Good faith” and protecting your partners.
Major breweries such as AB InBev and MillerCoors have wrestled with each other over key professional/collegiate sports league and team deals along with corporate entertainment properties offered by the likes of AEG and Live Nation. The competitive threats of loosing such properties usually forces brands & breweries to overpay.
Another overpaid expense is to remain category exclusive. Properties are keeping up with consumer demands for craft offerings and are selling the beer category in 2 parts: Domestic and Craft. Some properties are even adding a 3rd slice of the pie, Imports. This category delusion is a fine line to walk for sports or entertainment properties.
Update 6/9/2011: Great article from @IEGSR on Exclusivity becoming a thing of the past. Click Here. To view entire article, subscription in required.
Properties should secure a grocery/c-store partner and mandate programs for property partners (displays, ads, featured prices, etc)