Should bailout out banks be buying naming rights? Dennis Kucinich doesn’t think so, and last week he urged the Treasury department to cancel one such deal between Citibank and the New York Mets. Now Bloomberg says that seven more bailed out banks are spending money on stadium rights.
In 2006 when Citigroup signed the 20-year agreement with the Mets, the costliest in U.S. sports, the lender said the partnership would raise its profile among customers. Now the company may lose potential clients because of a backlash against the deal, said David Carter, executive director of the Sports Business Institute at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.
“It’s quickly becoming the sports-marketing poster child for the entire financial meltdown,” Carter said of Citigroup in an interview. “You may be harming the relationships you are trying to build.”
The eight banks received a total of $153.4 billion from the $700 billion U.S. bailout and are spending a combined $845 million for naming rights. U.S. banks have had $745 billion in losses and writedowns since the subprime mortgage crisis began in 2007.
The bailed out banks who are paying to name stadiums are:
Wachovia/Wells Fargo, $40 million, Philadelphia 76ers and Flyers
PNC, $40 million, Pittsburgh Pirates
Bank of New York Mellon Corp., $18 million, Pittsburgh Penguins, not renewed
Comerica, $66 million, Detroit Tigers
M&T Bank, $75 million, Baltimore Ravens
Citibank, $400 million, New York Mets
Bank of America Corp., $140 million, Carolina Panthers
JPMorgan Chase & Co, $66 million, Arizona Diamondbacks
The following companies have applied for bailout money but not yet received it:
BankAtlantic Bancorp. Inc., $27 million, Florida Panthers
Raymond James Financial Inc., $45 million, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Citigroup, Seven U.S. Banks Spend on Stadium Deals (Update2) [Bloomberg]