CENTRE COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — It’s a new era of name, image, and likeness as students, athletes, and alumni now have the opportunity to profit off partnerships and sponsorships. In Happy Valley, a new website works to make that process easier.
HappyValleyTalent.com is an online platform that helps talent and businesses connect for appearances, autographs, endorsements, and beyond.
“We felt that it was incumbent upon us to be proactive in this effort and to provide some support to Penn State and to sort of rally our community around this concept,” said Fritz Smith, CEO & President of the Happy Valley Adventure Bureau.
The site was created by the Center of Business & Industry of Centre County (CBICC) and the Happy Valley Adventure Bureau. It was a fast turn around for Centre County as Governor Wolf only signed the NIL Legislation into law this past June.
“This is really, really cutting edge,” said Irene Miller Wetzel, vice president of membership engagement for CBICC.
Eight additional organizations from across the region support the platform, including the Bellefonte Intervalley Area Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Bellefonte Inc., Moshannon Valley Economic Development Partnership, Philipsburg Revitalization Corporation, East Penns Valley Community and Business Association, Downtown State College Improvement District, the Patton Township Business Association, and the Blair County Chamber of Commerce.
“I think it’s important, this is oriented toward Centre County businesses, but certainly if other businesses in other parts of the state or even parts of the country want to sign up, that’s to the good,” said Smith.
On the site, there’s a private section where talent connects with businesses. Each party can set filters to help them find the partnerships they’re looking for.
In the public section, collaborative events will be posted for fans to see.
“Locals like us can attend those events very easily if they’re in our locality, and then out of town visitors, they can be perusing the website and if they see an event that sparks their interest, they can easily make plans accordingly,” said Wetzel.
Vern Squier, president and CEO of CBICC, said it’s a unique effort that’s only beginning.
“It’s not been seen really elsewhere in the country to this level,” said Squier. “I think there will be continued innovation on the part of businesses and students and athletes and alumni on how to use this platform and not just our platform but to engage in the phenomenon.”
The website went live on September 2.