CoolSprings.com broke the story several weeks ago about Nashville’s Sommet Center becoming Bridgestone Arena.
We also reported that Jon Morrell, a Hermitage based ticket scalper operating under the name “Donkey Tickets”, registered the domain name BridgestoneArena.com on December 16, 2009. Bridgestone registered 16 domain names just weeks later, as documented in the original story, available above.
Checking the WHOIS information shows that Jon Morrell of Donkey Tickets is still the registered owner of the domain name BridgestoneArena.com.
We’ll have to see what happens with BridgestoneArena.com next, when “Bridgestone Arena” soon becomes a federally registered trademark.
After the original story, we were contacted by Jon Morrell, who claimed he had bought the domain as a gift to give to Bridgestone.
Mr. Morrell said he had purchased the domain name to “ensure it was available for Bridgestone and prevent domain name squatters from registering it”.
Here is the letter making the renaming of Sommet Center to Bridgestone Arena official:
THE SPORTS AUTHORITY OF THE METROPOLITAN GOVERNMENT OF NASHVILLE AND DAVIDSON COUNTY
Attn: Emmett Edwards, Executive Director
222 Third Avenue North, Suite 300
Nashville, Tennessee 37201
We are excited to report that we have executed a new Naming Rights Agreement with Bridgestone Americas, Inc. and Bridgestone Americans Tire Operations to rename the Sommet Center (the “Arena”) as “Bridgestone Arena”. Article 18.1 of the Amended and Restated License and Use Agreement dated July 1, 2007, between The Sports Authority of the Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County (the “Sports Authority”) and Nashville Hockey Club, LP (the “Club) (the “L&U Agreement), requires that the Club obtain the approval of the Sports Authority before awarding naming rights to any portion of the Arena. I have included the text of Article 18.1 for your reference.
18.1 Naming Rights Agreements. Subject to the provisions of this Article, the Team is hereby granted the exclusive power and authority to sell the right to name the Arena, the rehearsal hall, and all other portions of the Arena other than the Reserved Areas (the “Naming Rights“) to a sponsor or sponsors. The terms and conditions on which the Naming Rights are sold (a “Naming Rights Agreement“) shall be determined solely by the Team from time to time during the Term hereof; provided, however, that (i) all Naming Rights Agreements shall expire no later than the expiration or termination of the Term hereof, and (ii) given the Authority’s substantial interest in the Arena and the public character thereof, the Team shall not permit any name to be given to the Arena or any portion thereof without the Authority’s prior approval, which approval shall not be withheld unless the proposed name (A) violates Applicable Law, or (B) would reasonably cause embarrassment to the Authority (such as names containing slang, barbarisms or profanity, names that relate to any sexually oriented business or enterprise or names that contain any overt political reference). The Authority shall be deemed to have given its approval to any name requested by the Team unless, within fifteen (15) says following the Team’s request for such approval, the Authority notifies the Team of its disapproval and furnishes the reason for such disapproval in reasonable detail. The Authority shall not except payment from any third party in return for, or in connection with, the giving of such approval. The Team agrees to indemnify, defend and hold harmless the Authority from any and all Claims and Costs arising out of the sale of the Naming Rights or any Naming Rights Agreement, except with respect to any actions taken by the Authority. Any Naming Rights Agreement entered into that does not comply with the terms of this Section shall be null and void. The Team shall be entitled to receive one hundred percent (100%) of all revenues generated by the sale of the Naming Rights.
This letter is the Club’s formal request to rename the Arena “Bridgestone Arena” effective immediately. In light of the upcoming event schedule and difficulty coordinating the schedules of all parties whose attendance at the announcement is imperative, there is an announcement planned for tomorrow, Tuesday, February 23, 2010. The announcement will contain the detail that the change is contingent upon Sports Authority approval. In order to begin implementing changes as soon as possible, we would like to request that the Authority consider a special called meeting for the purpose of approving the request.
Edward F. Lang
President of Business Operations
cc: Steve North, Michelle Kennedy, Theresa Costonis