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Ill-Fated Super Bowl Promotion Costs Jewelry Store Whopping $70K in Refunds

Denver Broncos' Peyton Manning walks off the field after the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game against the Seattle Seahawks Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Seahawks won 43-8. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
Chris O'Meara/Associated Press
Gabe ZaldivarPop Culture Lead WriterFebruary 4, 2014

If you thought the Denver Broncos felt bad, just consider how Jeff Dennis must be feeling. Thanks to a rare gaffe to start the game, his jewelry store had to give back $70,000 to his customers. 

Suddenly those Super Bowl hangovers don't seem so bad by comparison. 

AL.com's Joe Anderson reports (h/t New York Daily News) that safety that started out Super Bowl XLVIII had awful repercussions well away from the football field, because Jeff Dennis Jewelers was running a promotion promising a refund to customers if either team scored a safety. 

Oops. 

The Jewelers' Facebook page lit up with comments in the aftermath as a reported $70,000 was set to be returned to some very happy customers. 

This Facebook page explains the promotion well before the Broncos' Manny Ramirez sent a ball sailing over Peyton Manning to start the game. 

Today is the day! If there is a Safety scored by either team in today's game, we will refund tens of thousands of dollars to over 400 customers who purchased jewelry from us over the past 2 weeks! 

Here's how it will work...

1. There has to be a safety in the game... (Either team scoring 2 points via a safety)
2. My phone starts blowing up. 
3. We file the claim with the insurance company. (For the safety, not the phone)
4. They will send us a check in 2-3 weeks.
5. We will have a refund party for the 3rd year in a town and give back lots of money. 
6. Everybody who bought something is happy.
7. Insurance company bangs head against the wall, throws hands up in the air and pulls hair out!

Fun Stuff!

That's playing it fast and loose with the term fun—at least from a jewler's perspective. 

Now the important part is Dennis is covered, so it makes sense that he would share in the spoils of instant publicity. 

Anderson explains that Dennis has an insurance claim and merely had to pay a premium, so the hefty sum will largely be the bane of Lloyd's of London. And if you doubt his enthusiasm, Dennis proclaimed, "I'm ecstatic. I can't put it into words. It's unbelievable."

Enjoying such a remarkable turn of events demands that you do in fact take out an insurance claim, something Jim 'Mattress Mack' McIngvale who owns Gallery Furniture doesn't trifle with. 

According to Fox Sports' Shawn Ramsey, McIngvale's website declares that they do not take out insurance despite holding a recent promotion for the AFC and NFC Championships that netted his company a loss of $600,000. 

He told The Houston Chronicle's Ken Hoffman, "Nah, I don't have insurance in case we lose money on contests. I've never done that. I self-insure the contests."

Here is a report on the apparently dangerous game of NFL promotions: 

Not to be outdone by his own gaffe, Mattress Mack went right back and delivered a similar Super Bowl promotion, one that saw his company lose $7 million in refunds

Ramsey writes: 

During the week leading up to Super Bowl XLVIII, Gallery Furniture advertised if customers purchased $6,000 or more in furniture and had it delivered by 5 p.m. Super Bowl Sunday, they would be eligible to receive a full refund if the (slight) underdog Seahawks won the big game.

We are just going to assume next year's contest mandates customers correctly pick the coin flip for free furniture. 

Now the Super Bowl was hardly a stirring event, starting with a safety and never really picking up from there. For most of the night, success belonged to the Seahawks as well as a sizable chunk of people who chose to do business with Dennis and McIngvale recently. 

 

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