Kings look to rename Sacramento arena by opener as Power Balance era nears end
While there are still “five or six” different companies in the running, Cowbell Kingdom has been told the goal is to land a new deal in time for opening night, Oct. 31.
Regardless of how negotiations go, word has it that the franchise will distance itself from the Power Balance brand, including removing signage from outside the building before the start of the 2012-13 season.
Maloof Sports & Entertainment inked a deal with the energy-bracelet manufacturer in early 2011, after the long-standing, naming-rights contract with ARCO expired. The new name took effect on Mar. 1, 2011, coinciding with the NBA’s relocation deadline that year.
On Jan. 7, 2011, nearly two months before MS&E announced the name change, Power Balance was hit with a class-action lawsuit alleging “unfair business practices and false advertising.” The company later settled the suit, but filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy in November of 2011 after agreeing to pay $57.4 million on the claim.
In February of this year, MS&E filed an $8.3 million claim with the bankruptcy courts against Power Balance for the unpaid portion of their initial naming rights deal. According to the Sacramento Bee’s Dale Kasler, “(the) Maloofs’ court claim says Power Balance was to pay $975,000 the first year, $1.53 million the second, $1.9 million the third, $2.25 million the fourth and $2.35 million in year five.”
Kasler also reported that MS&E had collected just $700,000 of the $9 million owed on the overall deal.
Hanyang LLC, a company based out of Southern California, purchased Power Balance out of bankruptcy for $7 million, but has since decided against honoring the commitments of its predecessor.
So, the Maloofs are looking for a new naming rights deal, one with better staying power than the last.