Brazil Embraces Naming Rights

The era of stadia naming rights has arrived in Brazil, writes MEI's João Frigerio. Ever since the stadia that are currently being built in Brazil were first planned, a lot has been said about naming rights and how that practice – common in the US and the UK and growing in several other European countries – could be fundamental to help clubs and other stadium owners to finance the construction of the new venues.

Many promises have been made, but the market has been quite sceptical – perhaps influenced by failed experiences a few years ago… Well, not anymore. Indeed, recently two ground-breaking deals were announced in Bahia and in Sao Paulo.

The first one was between the Petropolis group – owner of beer brand Itaipava, which will name the New Fonte Nova Arena, in Salvador, Bahia. In fact, the stadium will be called Itaipava Arena Fonte Nova, therefore maintaining its famous nomenclature besides the new sponsor’s name. The deal was reported to be worth R$100m in a 10-year contract. Apart from the naming rights, the Petropolis group will retain exclusive pouring rights to sell its products in bars and restaurants in the new arena.

The second deal was between the insurance and financial services giant Allianz and WTorre, the construction company that will manage the new stadium of SE Palmeiras – one of the most important football clubs in the country. The contract is understood to be worth R$300m in a 20-year deal and the stadium is expected to be called Allianz Parque. Allianz is the naming sponsor of other stadiums worldwide – the most famous one being the Allianz Arena in Germany, home of FC Bayern Munich. (Compare the Brazilian deal to other stadiums sponsored by the company in the table).

The next stadia in line that are expected to agree naming rights sponsorship deals are the Arena Grêmio, in Porto Alegre – the recently inaugurated stadium belonging to the traditional southern team; the Atletico Paranaense stadium, known as Arena da Baixada, and which already had a naming sponsor agreement with the Japanese technology company Kyocera, between 2005 and 2008; and the new Corinthians stadium – which is expected to be the largest naming rights deal in the country. (editor’s note: On May 20th the Petropolis group announced a deal to name the Itaipava Arena Pernambuco, the venue built in the metropolitan area of Recife, which will host matches of the FIFA World Cup and of the Confederations Cup. The deal is similar to that done in Bahia, worth R$ 10 million a year for 10 years).

Naming rights value of selected Allianz-named stadia worldwide

Allianz Arena (Munich – 30 years) – EUR 6M – USD 8M

Allianz Parque (Sao Paulo – 20 years) – R$ 15M – USD 7.5M

Allianz Riviera (Nice – 9 years) –EUR 1.8M - USD 2.3M

Allianz Park (London – 6 years) – GBP 1.33M -  USD 2M

Source: Allianz

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