Special to NYSportsJournalism.com
February 25, 2017: One of the prime entertainment and sports destinations in the world gets to keep its name for at least another decade.
O2 is the commercial brand of Telefónica UK Limited and a leading digital communications company, has signed a pact to extend its naming rights deal to London’s O2 for another ten years.
Industry analysts valued the deal at $148 million U.S.
The deal was handled by AEG Global Partnerships, which is responsible for all sponsorships and partnership activations across AEG's businesses in the U.K. and Europe.
O2 and AEG's partnership dates back to 2005, when a deal was signed to rebuild the former Millennium Dome as The O2. The new venue opened to the public in 2007.
In 2016, more than one million tickets were sold for concerts and shows in The O2, the most of any venue in the world.
"Together AEG and O2 have created the world's most popular music and entertainment venue, now celebrating its 10th year of operation," Paul Samuels, evp-AEG Europe, said in a statement.
"From signing the deal back in 2005, O2 have become a significant and transformative force in the music business and our partnership has enabled countless benefits and experiences for their customers and all music, sports and entertainment fans," said Samuels.
Among the musicians to play in The O2 in its first year were Led Zeppelin, Bon Jovi and Prince, who set the record for the longest straight residency at The O2 at 21 nights.
Among the sports events to take place in The O2 are NBA games, the ATP World Tour Finals and events during the 2012 Summer Olympics.
The O2 complex includes the 21,000 capacity arena; indigo at The O2, a 2,800 capacity theatre style venue; Building Six, a 3,000 capacity club; an exhibition space (currently housing Star Wars); 26 bars and restaurants, and an 11-screen cinema complex.
According to Mark Evans, CEO for The O2, "We are incredibly proud of our highly successful partnership with AEG that has made The O2 into the internationally renowned music and entertainment venue it is today. Over the past ten years our work together has set an industry gold standard and it will continue to do so for the next ten years.
"The new deal reaffirms our commitment to customers, with the number of tickets available to shows via Priority Tickets doubling – giving them access to tickets to unforgettable live experiences 48 hours before anyone else," said Evans.
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