Insurance company Canada Life has become the new naming rights partner of the home of NHL ice hockey team Winnipeg Jets with current sponsor, telecommunications firm Bell, set to remain associated with the arena in a lesser capacity.

The venue, which also plays host to Manitoba Moose American Hockey League (AHL) games as well as major concerts and other events, will be renamed Canada Life Centre from July 1. The 10-year sponsorship agreement includes substantial branding, media, hospitality and community assets for Canada Life, which agreed the deal with True North Sports + Entertainment, owner and operator of the arena and Jets.

“As True North Sports + Entertainment celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, we can’t think of a more exciting way to embark upon the next 10 years of our organisation’s journey than with a partner like Canada Life, that shares the same community commitment and passion for our great city and country,” said Mark Chipman, executive chairman of True North Sports + Entertainment.

Canada Life employs more than 11,000 people across the country, with 3,300 alone at its headquarters in Winnipeg. “We are thrilled to introduce Canada Life to all Canadians in this big and bold way and build on the momentum our company has achieved since moving to one brand in the Canadian market,” said Jeff Macoun, president and chief operating officer in Canada for Canada Life.

“We have a long history and deep roots in Winnipeg and we’re proud to have our name on a place that embodies the heart and spirit of the city’s vibrant community.”

The arena opened in 2004 as the MTS Centre, and was renamed Bell MTS Place in 2017 after Bell acquired Manitoba Telecom Services. In a separate announcement, True North said Bell MTS has agreed a new five-year deal, running across the 2021 to 2026 seasons, to remain as an official partner of the Jets and Moose and official telecommunications provider of their home venue. 

True North said Bell MTS will “revolutionise” the experience for Jets fans in the building, and those watching via broadcaster TSN, through next-generation networks and technologies. The agreement also includes new behind the scenes content produced by True North Sports + Entertainment and exclusive to Bell.

Additionally, the Bell logo that has appeared on the helmets of Winnipeg Jets players this season will remain for the next five campaigns.

Image: Winnipeg Jets