Essensa, AHL announce partnership

NEW YORK/SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League (AHL) and Essensa, a national group purchasing organization (GPO), today announced a new, multi-year partnership. Essensa will become a sponsor of the AHL Marketing Meeting and AHL Annual Meeting, and will be the Official GPO of the AHL, providing cost-saving opportunities to the league and its participating AHL member clubs. This agreement was brokered by Denver-based Impression Sports & Entertainment.

Essensa will provide the AHL and participating clubs with business development opportunities and access to lower pricing on a wide variety of contracted products and services used in day-to-day business operations.

“This relationship is a natural progression for Essensa, which for more than five years has helped teams as well as sports and recreation organizations streamline and reduce costs in procuring goods and services,” said John P. Sganga, Essensa President and CEO. “This collaboration will deliver significant benefits to the AHL and its fans. We look forward to many years of shared success.”

Under the agreement, individual AHL clubs will also have the opportunity to become Essensa GPO members. Five clubs, the Rockford IceHogs, San Diego Gulls, Syracuse Crunch, Texas Stars, and Utica Comets, have already signed on.

"We are excited to begin our partnership with Essensa," said Chris Nikolis, EVP, Marketing & Business Development for the AHL. "Essensa has a proven track record at streamlining the business operations and reducing costs for its members. We are sure our teams will benefit from Essensa’s insights and business partnerships."

The AHL becomes the third national professional sports league to join Essensa. Essensa is also the exclusive GPO of the ECHL and Minor League Baseball (MiLB).

About Essensa:
Essensa is the fastest-growing national GPO delivering procurement solutions, supply chain efficiencies, and greater operating margins to sports and recreation leagues, as well as hotels, spas, country clubs, and entertainment venues. Essensa members have access to a $41 billion portfolio comprising 2,000 contracts through more than 900 suppliers. With value-added services, including the Employee Discount Program, complimentary publications, regular contract updates, and exceptional customer service and support staff, Essensa is the clear choice to make a real impact on expenses. Learn more at

About the AHL:
Formed in 1936 and celebrating its 80th-anniversary season in 2015–16, the American Hockey League ( serves as the top development league for the players, coaches, managers, executives, broadcasters and staff of all 30 National Hockey League teams. More than 88 percent of today’s NHL players are American Hockey League graduates, and for the 14th year in a row, more than 6 million fans attended AHL games across North America in 2014–15. Through the years, the AHL has been home to more than 100 future members of the Hockey Hall of Fame.