A’s, O.co have rift over Coliseum name
A year ago, the Coliseum Authority inked a deal with internet retailer Overstock.com for naming rights at the Coliseum. That led to a further renaming from Overstock.com Coliseum to O.co Coliseum, which rolls off the tongue like so many classic stadium names like CMGI Field, PSINet Stadium, or 3Com Park. Apparently the A’s have been rather casual about honoring the change, because the references to O.co either at the stadium or during broadcasts are few and far between. The reason? Money, of course. The Trib’s Angela Woodall reports that the naming rights deal splits the $2 million per year between the JPA and the Raiders, with nothing going to the A’s.
Woodall points out that the A’s have control over the pouring rights and signage, a deal that was hammered out in the post-Mt. Davis settlement. The A’s and O.co are working out their own deal, though I have a sense that both sides are bringing an overinflated sense of worth to the proceedings. For now, the team is only obligated to promote O.co three times per game during radio and TV broadcasts. So it’s not surprising that when fans go to the Coliseum page on the A’s website, they might not realize that O.co is a sponsor due to the lack of mentions.
That’s just as well. Even though the A’s have many more games broadcast than the Raiders, O.co probably values the mentions during Raiders games, which are nationally broadcast, more than the baseball team’s mostly local broadcasts. Last Monday, the SEC closed an investigation into the retailer’s previous financial disclosures. That could halt the company’s six-month stock slide, though you wouldn’t know it from trading this week.
The Coliseum has gone through several name changes in its life, all of them starting with Mt. Davis:
- Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum (original-1998)
- UMAX Coliseum (1997, aborted)
- Network Associates Coliseum (1998-2004)
- McAfee Coliseum (2004-08)
- Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum (reprise after McAfee deal expired, 2008-11)
- Overstock.com Coliseum (2011, briefly)
- O.co Coliseum (2011-current)
Isn’t it time to leave well enough alone?