Special Report (Enterprise) IN BOX
JOINING GIANTS IN THE PIT
Goodyear. Marlboro. Pennzoil. Cornnuts?
Small businesses could get their 15 minutes of fame at the Indianapolis 500 in May, as high-profile drivers, up in arms over a reorganization, took household names--and their million-dollar advertising spots--to a competing event. Now, a decal on an Indy 500-level dragster can be had for as little as $25,000, opening up the track to smaller sponsors.
"I've always wanted Cornnuts to be on an Indy car, but I would've had to fork over my entire marketing budget," says Joe Heaney, president of the privately held corn-chip maker, which is negotiating for a spot. "Now, we have the chance to compete with the bucks of Frito-Lay and Ruffles."EDITED BY I. JEANNE DUGAN