Slideshow Banking on March Madness

Published
  • March 25 2014, 10:32am EDT
7 Images Total

Ratings for the opening weekend of the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament rose 8% from a year earlier. Several financial firms benefited from the visibility of having their names on venues that hosted games.

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First Niagara Center

First Niagara secured naming rights after it acquired nearly 200 upstate New York branches from HSBC. The Buffalo, N.Y., arena should have given Syracuse a home court feel, but the perennial power lost a second-round shocker to Dayton.

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BMO Harris Bradley Center

Bank of Montreal's U.S. bank put its name on the Milwaukee, Wis., arena after it bought Marshall & Ilsley in 2011. There were no upsets in the arena during this year's tournament.

Scottrade Center

The tournament's biggest upset so far took place in St. Louis, when Wichita State lost its first game of the year to Kentucky. Scottrade has maintained naming rights to the arena since 2006.

PNC Center

The Pittsburgh company gained naming rights to the Raleigh, N.C., arena when it purchased RBC Bank from Royal Bank of Canada. Duke University, located just a few miles from the venue, was upset by Mercer in the first round.

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Capital One/Quicksilver

Cap One is a tournament sponsor and it ran commercials with Samuel L. Jackson (pictured) and Charles Barkley during the weekend. It also urged people to submit brackets for a chance to win $1,500, as long as they used the #KaChing hashtag tied to the company's Quicksilver card.

Quicken/Warren Buffett

Quicken offered $1 billion - insured by Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway - to anyone who correctly selected the winner of ev ery NCAA tournament game. Because of a plethora of upsets, all contestants were eliminated before the first round ended.

Image: Bloomberg News