Aberdeen’s new state-of-the-art arena will be called P&J Live after a naming rights partnership was agreed with the owner of The Press and Journal regional newspaper.

SMG Europe, which operates The Event Complex Aberdeen (TECA), signed the deal with publishing company DC Thomson Media.

The concert, exhibition, conference and banqueting arena, which has been developed by Aberdeen City Council, development partner Henry Boot Developments (HBD) and main contractor Robertson Group, is part of the wider £333m (€377.4m/$422.4m) Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre (AECC) project, which includes two on-site hotels, an energy centre, extensive landscaping and parking.

Aberdeen City Council co-leader councillor Douglas Lumsden said: “The P&J Live partnership will ensure the fantastic acts, conferences and events will be known throughout the north of Scotland and beyond which fits in with our Regional Economic Strategy with internationalisation at its heart.

“We want to attract major artists, conferences, associations and meetings to the north-east to ensure the area competes on a global scale and it will be incredible to watch how the P&J Live partnership will contribute towards that.”

The local authority has financed the development through the £370m issue of a bond on the London Stock Exchange, the first time that a Scottish council has engaged in such an initiative.

Located beside Aberdeen International Airport, the 12,500-capacity main arena will host conferences, exhibitions and music concerts. The facility will also boast three further conference/exhibition halls, four multi-purpose conference suites, and nine meeting rooms.

Events already lined up for the venue, which is scheduled to open in the summer, include Lewis Capaldi, Elton John, Russell Howard, Alice Cooper, Disney on Ice and Aberdeen Performance Car Show, with more set to be announced.

The arena and its events are expected to produce £113m in visitor spend and 352 full-time jobs over the next 10 years.

A free, ticketed pre-opening event on August 10 will give fans a first look around P&J Live.

The main arena includes an exclusive 50 person capacity Show Deck and 16 luxurious private hospitality suites. It also has a VIP lounge, The View and three 1,700—seat exhibition halls.

Nick Waight, managing director at P&J Live said: “We are thrilled to announce P&J Live as our official venue name, having a brand which has strong roots in Aberdeen is incredibly important to us and the partnership with DC Thomson Media is hugely positive for our business and pivotal to the success of this transformational project.

“We look forward to a strong partnership and bringing P&J Live to life, delivering on a fantastic new venue for entertainment, conferencing and exhibitions for Aberdeen and the North East of Scotland.”

Images: AECC