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|Dick's Sporting Goods Scores Sports Park's Naming Rights|
COMMERCE CITY, Colo., Nov. 8 -- The largest soccer sports complex in the world will be called Dick's Sporting Goods Park when it opens in April, the complex's owner and operator, Kroenke Sports Enterprises (KSE), announced today.
Dick's Sporting Goods, Inc. (NYSE: DKS) has signed a 20-year naming rights agreement on the property which includes an 18,000-seat outdoor stadium and 24 full-sized outdoor fields. Dick's Sporting Goods Park will be the home of the MLS Colorado Rapids.
"It takes a special partner to share a vision for what this sports park will be and Ed Stack and his team at Dick's Sporting Goods have that vision," said E. Stanley Kroenke, owner and president of KSE. "Their commitment to the community and the growth of sports is a perfect match for what Dick's Sporting Goods Park represents."
While the amount of sponsorship was not disclosed, the duration of the sponsorship and the size of the project make it one of the largest stadium sponsorship deals in American soccer history. The deal includes naming rights, signage and logo identification not just in soccer-specific programs, but in all programming associated with the fields and any use of the stadium and fields including other sports teams, special events and concerts. The stadium is pre-fitted for concert setups of up to 26,000 fans.
"We are thrilled today to be announcing our long-term commitment to this pinnacle project with our partners at Kroenke Sports," said Jeffrey R. Hennion, senior vice president and chief marketing officer of Dick's Sporting Goods. "Dick's Sporting Goods Park will be, we believe, the premier soccer facility in the U.S., bringing the game closer to a broad spectrum of fans of the game and players of all ages. As the largest full-line sporting goods retailer in the U.S., one of our primary goals is to support the communities in which we do business and the growth of youth sports within those communities. This world-class facility here in Denver, our ongoing relationship with Kroenke Sports, and our support of Major League Soccer, demonstrate the ultimate potential of how we can reach this goal, especially when we have such strong partners with similar vision."
Dick's Sporting Goods also becomes the exclusive retail sporting goods partner of the stadium, fields, Colorado Rapids, Colorado Youth Soccer and NDP Lacrosse. The sports park will serve as the official home of Colorado Youth Soccer and NDP Lacrosse. Additionally, Dick's Sporting Goods will become an affiliate sponsor of a number of soccer and lacrosse tournaments to be held at the site annually.
Dick's Sporting Goods Park serves as the anchor for the 917-acre Prairie Gateway site being developed in Commerce City, nine miles northwest of downtown Denver. The Prairie Gateway project is a public-private partnership between Kroenke Sports and Commerce City. Also on the site will be a new Commerce City municipal hall, retail facilities, offices for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and a new visitors' center for the Rocky Mountain Arsenal Wildlife Refuge, which abuts the property.
Pittsburgh-based Dick's Sporting Goods, Inc. is an authentic full-line sporting goods retailer offering a broad assortment of brand name sporting goods equipment, apparel, and footwear in a specialty store environment. As of July 29, 2006 the company operated 268 stores in 34 states primarily throughout the eastern half of the U.S.
Denver-based KSE is the Rocky Mountain West's premier provider of live and broadcast sports and entertainment. KSE owns and operates the NBA Denver Nuggets, NHL Colorado Avalanche, NLL Colorado Mammoth and MLS Colorado Rapids. KSE owns a number of Denver-area venues including the Pepsi Center arena, downtown Denver's historic Paramount Theatre and CityLights Pavilion. The Altitude Sports & Entertainment regional sports network is owned by KSE as is the Opera Shop theatrical lighting and design group and Altitude Profit Consulting retail division. Kroenke Sports is also a partner in the AFL Colorado Crush.