Pacers Ownership Still Seeking A Naming Rights Partner

Meanwhile, they are still thinking.


The Indiana Pacers ownership is still looking for a naming rights partner for its Indianapolis NBA home arena. The old partner’s name is still on the building despite not renewing its Pacers partnership. Names come and go. Partnerships come and go but something remains constant. Sports journalists always seem eager to call a stadium and or an arena by a corporate name and the purchaser of the stadium and or arena naming rights wants the sports media to use that name. Eighteen years ago, the battle between the corporate rights holder of the football stadium in Denver and a Denver newspaper got out of hand as the financial service was annoyed with the Denver Post’s ignoring its corporate name of the stadium. There is no reason for media, unless the media is a TV or radio rights holder, should identify a corporate sponsor in reports. But sports reporters seem to like using corporate names.

Last July, Brent Rockwell, the former vice president of corporate, community and public relations for Pacers Sports and Entertainment, claimed the business was in no rush to find a new partner but there is no doubt Pacers ownership would like a multimillion-dollar contract sooner than later. Is it worth multimillions of dollars for a company to sink into a building? Some CEOs want to be associated with sports and are willing make a vanity buy for naming rights and that is what happened in Oakland a decade ago with the city’s Coliseum. But it is not clear if stadium or arena naming rights are worth the cost. The teams want the money as do municipalities who get a share. It is getting more difficult finding companies willing to pay tens of millions of dollars annually for naming rights as various sports ownership have found out. But there are some companies still willing to pay the price.

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