Nov 17, 2023 - Business

Nissan retains naming rights for new Titans stadium

A rendering of the new Nissan Stadium. Courtesy of the Tennessee Titans

The new Titans stadium will be called Nissan Stadium, as part of a new, 20-year agreement between the automaker and the football team.

Why it matters: For the Titans, choosing a naming rights partner presented one of the most important business decisions for the new stadium, expected to open in 2027.

  • Nissan, which is one of the largest employers in the region, provides continuity since the current stadium has had four names in its 24 years.

Between the lines: Nissan has been the sponsor of the current Titans' stadium since 2015. Although other companies expressed an interest in putting their name on the team's new home, Titans president and CEO Burke Nihill said Nissan has been the ideal partner.

  • The 20-year agreement begins the first year the stadium opens. The Titans and Nissan declined to disclose financial terms of the deal.

Zoom in: Nihill tells Axios talks with Nissan got more serious after the new stadium became a reality. The Titans didn't open up the naming rights to a competitive bidding process, Nihill says.

  • "I think this building is obviously going to be a really attractive building. There's going to be some of the world's biggest events coming through here. So, there may have been a scenario where somebody having nothing to do with Nashville, having nothing to do with Tennessee, looking for a commercial opportunity would have been interested. But that wasn't the Titans' perspective."
  • "From our perspective, we were looking for a naming rights partner who sees the world the same way we do. They have 11,000 employees in this community — they're invested here."

What she's saying: Nissan U.S. chief marketing officer Marisstella Marinkovic tells Axios the current stadium has become a "household name" in the region. "We wanted to continue that and keep the name at home."

  • "If we look at Nissan in general, we're now celebrating 40 years of operation in the U.S. and that began right down I-24 at our Smyrna plant."
  • "It provides a yearlong showcase for our brand, for our vehicles," Marinkovic says. "We really get to demonstrate to those fans, regardless if they're football fans or music fans, and we get to connect with them and share our brand with them."

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