Atlanta-based SunTrust Banks has signed a 25-year deal to be the naming rights partner of the Atlanta Braves' new ballpark.
Ground was broken at the new SunTrust Park on Wednesday, as the deal was announced. The stadium is scheduled to be completed in time for opening day in 2017.
Sports Business Journal reported later on Wednesday that SunTrust’s sponsorship will be worth over US$10 million per year to the Braves, which announced plans to build a new stadium in the Cobb County area in November last year. Although unconfirmed, that would equate to at least US$250 million over the full term.
The Braves' current home, Turner Field, was only built in 1996, initially to host the track and field events at that year's Olympic Games before being converted into a Major League Baseball (MLB) facility. However, the Braves decided to push the button on an entirely new facility by 2017, when its Turner Field lease expires, at a cost of around US$672 million.
“This is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to partner with a great organisation that shares our values for winning and serving the community,” said SunTrust chairman and chief executive William H. Rogers, Jr.
“This partnership provides SunTrust increased visibility on a regional and national level through a truly unique mixed-use development that will attract fans and visitors throughout the year. Importantly, it will help us reach more people as we fulfill our bank's purpose of lighting the way to financial well-being.”
Braves chairman and chief executive Terry McGuirk added: “The new ballpark constitutes a new chapter in Atlanta Braves baseball, and we are excited that SunTrust has decided to build upon our decades-long relationship and embark on this journey with us.
“Both of our organisations have deep roots in Atlanta and loyal fans throughout the Southeast and across the nation. We couldn't imagine a more perfect partner and look forward to seeing the first pitch at SunTrust Park in 2017.”
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