Get ready for Boombah Sports Complex in Seminole County – Orlando Sentinel
The world of large sports venues that have sold naming rights includes Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Guaranteed Rate Field in Chicago and the Smoothie King Center in New Orleans.
But even smaller sports markets are getting into the lucrative branding game, which can reap major dividends by allowing facilities to take on names such as the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Ky., Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre in Victoria, British Columbia, and ONEOK Field in Tulsa, Okla.
Now, Seminole County is poised jump into the corporate name game. The county’s year-old state-of-the-art sports facility will be rechristened the Boombah Sports Complex Seminole County if commissioners on Tuesday approve the sale of the naming rights to the Yorkville, Ill., manufacturing firm.
To purchase the naming rights for 10 years and splash its name on the signs, banners, scoreboards and promotions, Boombah will shell out $750,000 to Major Display, a sports marketing and manufacturing company based in Franklin, N.C. Seminole hired Major Display to seek sponsors for its sports facilities.
As part of the deal, Seminole received 21 high-tech Major Display scoreboards along with other equipment, worth a total of about $556,000.
Sixteen scoreboards are at the $28 million sports complex on East Lake Mary Boulevard, just south of the Orlando Sanford International Airport. The other five are at the newly refurbished Soldiers Creek Park near Longwood, which also will add Boombah to its name as part of the arrangement.
Boombah, with more than 800 employees, manufactures sports uniforms, footwear, equipment and other accessories to scores of leagues around the country. The company also will host a variety of tournaments at both Seminole complexes.
Because Boombah is an online and mail-order company without “bricks and mortar” stores, officials hope having the name at the Seminole complexes will help spread the Boombah brand, said Bob Grey, strategic partner manager for Boombah Inc.
“It basically puts our name out there, because we don’t have the same name recognition” as other sporting-good stores, Grey said.
This is Boombah’s first venture in purchasing the naming rights to a sports facility, and the company is in talks with other markets, Grey said.
Although Seminole won’t get any cash from the deal, officials said the county received fair compensation in the form of top-of-line digital display scoreboards with video and other high-tech equipment that Major Display installed weeks before the sports complex opened in May 2016.
“Had we not done this, we would’ve gone with a standard simple scoreboard that would’ve cost us about $5,000 or $6,000,” said Joe Abel, Seminole’s leisure services director, who took part in brokering the deal. “This gave us the technology, and we did it without any additional money coming out of our pockets.”
Commission Chairman John Horan agreed.
“Scoreboards are a big-ticket item,” Horan said. “And we were trying to find creative ways to get premium scoreboards from day one with paying any capital. … We haven’t paid a dime.”
County officials added that for any future sponsorship or advertising Major Display garners for Seminole — such as advertisements presented on scoreboards or outfield fences — the county would receive 70 percent of those sales, according to the contract.
Seminole built its sports complex and recently completed a $6 million redevelopment of its Soldiers Creek Park, at 2400 State Road 419 just west of U.S. Highway 17-92, with hopes it will attract top-notch national tournaments and bring in thousands of visitors into the county.
When governments finish a sports construction project, companies are eager to pony up big bucks for the rights to post their names on the outside of a venue, because it provides them with widespread exposure in long run.
“Naming sports or entertainment venues plants the brand name in the minds of a large number of people that drive by, walk or take public transportation near these venues …. at a relatively low cost,” said Ira Kalb, a consultant and professor of clinical marketing at the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California at Los Angeles.
For stadium owners, selling naming rights can help pay for hefty costs of construction, renovations or maintenance.
MetLife, for example, signed a $400 million, 25-year deal in 2011 for naming rights to the Meadowlands Stadium, where the New York Giants and New York Jets football teams play. Reliant Energy agreed to a $300 million deal in 2002 to name the stadium where the Houston Texans play. The stadium was renamed NRG Stadium in 2014 after NRG Energy bought Reliant in 2009.
In 2009, the Orlando Magic and Amway Global inked a 10-year, $40 million naming-rights deal to call the Magic’s venue Amway Center. The Magic were granted the naming rights after contributing more than 10 percent of the nearly $500 million cost for the center’s construction.
The nonprofit Florida Citrus Sports, which hosts bowl games and other events at Camping World Stadium, sold the naming rights for the stadium to the Kentucky RV dealer. Florida Citrus Sports was given that right after contributing $6 million toward the stadium’s $207 million renovation. But the organization wouldn’t reveal how much it was paid from Camping World.
Kiki Kaplanidou, associate professor of sports management at the University of Florida, said it’s important that local officials make it clear that the company doesn’t own the facility that carries its name.
“Many times the general public is not aware of the relationship, or what are naming rights and what they mean,” she said.
Even so, Constantine said changing the name of a sports complex takes some adjustment.
“As a UCF graduate, I’ve always liked the name Brighthouse Stadium,” he said, referring to the university’s football stadium which recently changed its name to Spectrum Stadium.
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