SALT LAKE CITY — For the third time in 25 years, Utah's foremost sports and entertainment venue is getting a new moniker. Provo-based Vivint has purchased the naming rights for what will now be called Vivint Smart Home Arena in downtown Salt Lake City.

The Utah County technology company signed a 10-year naming agreement with Larry H. Miller Sports & Entertainment. Vivint is a smart home and security products and services provider.

The name change goes into effect immediately as it did in 2006 when EnergySolutions Arena replaced the Delta Center.

"The Utah Jazz and the arena are proud to have Vivint as our new naming rights partner," Miller president Steve Starks said during a news conference on the arena floor.

"The Utah Jazz and the arena have been an incredible economic engine for this region, and have created a tremendous sense of pride among Utahns," said Vivint chief executive officer Todd Pedersen. "This agreement extends far beyond a typical ‘logo-on-the-building’ arrangement — it’s a true partnership built around innovation, community impact and the drive to elevate the prominence of Utah."

Pedersen said it has always been a dream of his to have a business relationship with the Miller family and the Jazz specifically.

“Good people work in (the Miller) organization,” he said. “I feel fortunate that our companies have this partnership opportunity.”

Jazz owner Gail Miller said she's "pleased about this association between two Utah businesses."

“Vivint shares our vision of having the arena be a gathering place for our community where millions of visitors can enjoy the Jazz and other first-class entertainment," she said. “This is an ongoing investment for the 1.8 million people who will enjoy great sports and entertainment in this building each year.”

Financial terms of the 10-year naming rights deal were not disclosed, but such deals for professional sports stadiums typically involve millions of dollars annually. In June, Forbes reported that the median naming rights revenue earned by NBA teams was about $4 million.

In 1990, Delta Air Lines reportedly paid $20 million to $25 million total for the first 10 years of its contract when the stadium first opened. EnergySolutions will continue its business relationship with the Jazz as a Champion Partner.

This is the latest change for an arena that has undergone a $25 million renovation, including installation of a massive, $15 million video scoreboard.

With the new sponsorship deal, the venue will eventually offer fans in attendance at Jazz games and other events an improved customer experience, said Vivint chief marketing officer Jeff Lyman.

In expounding on why the company decided on a more descriptive name for the arena, he said that while many in Utah are familiar with the billion-dollar tech firm, many outside the state are not familiar with the company.

Now the company has a platform to expand its brand to more potential consumers across North America.

“We’re this brand that is sort of an obscure name,” Lyman said. “We want to make sure that when we introduce Vivint to a whole new audience through this relationship, that we do so by helping them understand who we are and what we do.”

While such a major sponsorship is expensive, some local marketing analysts believe companies that make the investment often receive fair value if the partnership is well planned and well executed.

“This kind of (marketing) elevates your brand and puts you in an “always on” status in which people are seeing your brand,” said Stephanie Miller, public relations director for Salt Lake City marketing firm Penna Powers. “It offers credibility to your brand.”

There are definitely some benefits to having a sponsorship of this type,” she said. “That’s why a lot of companies do it and (it is) very competitive,” Miller said.

Marc Stryker, media director for Penna Powers said that this agreement “piggybacks” on the other sports marketing efforts Vivint has, most notably with BYU.

“They are well known in the space,” he said. “They must know the valuation that they are getting from the sports sponsorships that they’ve done already.

Contributing: Jody Genessy, Deseret News


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