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City Council Approves Events Center Name

August 21, 2012, 10:09 PM by Kelly Bartnick

City Council Approves Events Center Name

The Sioux Falls City Council has approved a proposal naming the new events center after T. Denny Sanford. The decision came in unanimous vote Tuesday night.

The proposal names the new building the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center. Sanford Health, PREMIER Bank Card and First PREMIER Bank entered into a joint agreement that will pay $750,000 per year over 25 years for the exclusive naming rights. The companies also chipped in another $2 million for the facility's scoreboards. 

"Six months ago you stood here and told us you could do this, raise money for the city. And I'd admit I sat here and didn't believe you. You proved me wrong," Sioux Falls City Council Member Greg Jamison said to city officials shortly before Tuesday's vote.

"This naming rights deal in Sioux Falls is at the top of any list you could possibly put together," John Alpert with Legends Sales and Marketing said.  The city hired the company to facilitate the agreement.

Official groundbreaking on the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center is about a week away. Representatives from the marketing company hired to sell naming rights are already working on new contract with the city that would continue selling sponsorships inside the building. City officials believe the Sanford Company's payment will cover operational costs once the doors open in 2014.

"We approached this knowing we were way above market. We view this as part of our community investment obligation as large employers in this town," Dave Knudson with Sanford Health said.

The final proposal also gives Sanford and the PREMIER Companies exclusive rights to name the building for life beyond the 25-year agreement.

The agreement also allows limited sponsorship by title sponsorship competitors. Sanford Health, PREMIER Bankcard, and First PREMIER Bank were the only companies to submit a formal bid. Others who expressed interest in naming the building included Avera McKennan Hospital & University Health Center, First Dakota National Bank, KELOLAND TV, and Orthopedic Institute.

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