Nov 10, 2023 - Business

A spot on the Richmond edition of Monopoly cost businesses real money

The Richmond board. Photo: Karri Peifer/Axios

As Monopoly players well know, nothing in this world is free — and for some Richmond businesses, that included landing a space on the recently released Richmond edition of the game.

What's happening: The board, unveiled two weeks ago, features 24 local attractions and businesses drawn from more than 1,000 suggestions from locals.

  • Turns out, some of those businesses paid to be there.

According to a list of rates obtained by Axios Richmond, the cost for a place on the board ranged from $21,000 to $60,000, spread out over three years, depending on which package local businesses selected.

The packages:

  • Bronze: square on the board for $7,000 per year for three years.
  • Silver: square on the board and a community chest card for $12,000 per year for three years.
  • Gold: square on the board, community chest card, an image on the board montage and an image on the box lid montage for $20,000 per year for three years.

A Monopoly representative declined to comment on how many or which local attractions paid for a place, but said:

  • "We took the public's suggestions into great consideration when deciding who to reach out to as this board was made for the Richmond community."

It's unclear how many of the local spots featured paid for the honor.

Presumably Francine, the Lowe's cat, did not pay to be featured on a community chest card, but Virginia Lottery paid $60,000 for the gold package, a spokesperson for the lottery told Axios in response to a records request.

  • "This was a terrific and extremely unusual marketing opportunity for $60,000," Virginia Lottery's John Hagerty said.

Be smart: Virginia Lottery's $60,000 payout for a board placement is far less than the state has paid for other promotional opportunities.

In 2018, Virginia Tourism shelled out $536,130.38 to have one episode of "The Bachelorette" filmed in Richmond, the Times-Dispatch reported.


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