Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Florida Panthers Sell Ice Naming Rights To Lexus

According to the Sports Business Journal, the Florida Panthers have sold the naming rights to the ICE SURFACE (and not arena) to automaker Lexus.

The only other deal in the major N.A. sports where a team has sold naming rights to its playing surface is in Minneapolis, where the Vikings signed Mall of America in 2009 to a 3 year deal.

Naming rights deals for playing surfaces are rare in sports because leagues have restrictions on how brands can be displayed on the "field, court or ice". For example, in the NHL teams are allowed to sell four advertising positions on the ice. A "space adjacent to the center circle can also be sold if the corporate brand is part of the building name".

Lexus won't have its name on the ice since the 4 spots are already accounted for. However, they have first dibs when one becomes available. For now, its brand will hang on a sign prominently over center ice.

No word if the LEXUS brand will be adversely impacted if the Panthers offence continues to stall.

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