Belgium’s national lottery has penned a naming-rights deal for the home of RSC Anderlecht, the country’s most successful football club.
The official unveiling of the new Lotto Park name had been expected for several days after a banner depicting the name was hung up outside the 21,500-capacity stadium in Brussels.
The deal will run for at least the next five years, but financial details of the agreement have not been disclosed.
It is the first time a naming-rights partner has been recruited for the stadium since it was rebuilt 36 years ago. Previously the venue was known as the Constant Vanden Stock Stadium after the club’s president, who died in 2008.
The lottery has been one of the club’s main sponsors since last season.
“We realise that a name change is a sensitive innovation,” the club’s chief executive, Jo Van Biesbroeck, said. “But time does not stand still. Linking a stadium name to a strong brand is a trend that has been happening in Europe for years. In Germany, for example, more than 70% of the stadiums already carry a brand name.”
David Steegen, Anderlecht’s head of public affairs, added that the club needs the income from a naming-rights partnership in order to compete financially on a European level.
“Without partners like Lotto we can’t get Vincent Kompany back, we can’t snare Samir Nasri, and we can’t train all those young talents the way we want,” Steegen said.
Lotto has more than 1.2 million Belgian customers every week.
Image credit: Zwerten