Verizon Center Changes To Capital One Arena; Sources Say Deal Is For 10 Years, $100M
Verizon Center today will switch names, with Maryland-based Capital One taking over as "naming rights sponsor" for the DC home of the Wizards, Capitals and Georgetown basketball, according to Andy Medici of the WASHINGTON BUSINESS JOURNAL. Monumental Sports & Entertainment, which owns the Wizards and Capitals, "declined to disclose terms of the deal." But sources said that the deal for Capital One Arena is "valued at about $100 million over 10 years." MS&E Chair Ted Leonsis said that "full signage and branding will follow in the fall." MS&E also announced a $40M investment to "upgrade the venue's technology and facilities, including moving to a new point of sale system and adding additional payment options for fans." MS&E "underscored Capital One's local roots and highlighted the company's community volunteerism and charitable giving," which amounted to $48.1M in '16. MS&E in March '16 tapped MP & Silva to "sell the naming rights." The deal with Verizon was set to expire in '18 (BIZJOURNALS.com, 8/9). In DC, Thom Loverro wrote while the deal will "put money in Leonsis' pocket," it was "not what Leonsis hoped for." Leonsis had "hoped for a big payday" with the naming rights, but "failed to find someone willing to pay the freight." Instead, Leonsis "went to someone in the family for help" -- Capital One, already a corporate sponsor for the Wizards and Capitals. Capital One Chair Richard Fairbank also is a partner in MS&E (WASHINGTON TIMES, 8/7).