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Naming-rights sponsor sought for Kensington Oval

The operators of the Kensington Oval cricket stadium in Bridgetown, Barbados are seeking the venue’s first naming-rights sponsor.

SportBusiness reports that sports marketing consultancy Khan Consulting has been appointed to aid the stadium operator’s search. Kensington Oval Management Inc. (KOMI) is said to be seeking a deal that will last at least five years.

Kensington Oval has a capacity of 28,000 and regularly hosts matches played by the West Indies. The venue, which opened in the late 19th century and hosted its first Test match in 1930, also staged the finals of the 2007 Cricket World Cup and 2010 World Twenty20.

As well as cricket, the stadium has been used to host football matches and music concerts. KOMI is looking to secure a naming-rights sponsor for the stadium in a move that would mark a first for the Caribbean.

KOMI chairman Damien Gaskin told SportBusiness: “This is a resource that has not been monetised. One reason for this is the fact no one has done it in the Caribbean region, so there’s no case study to follow. Oftentimes the not insignificant upfront financial and time cost for a reward that is so unknown in the region is off-putting.

“This and the nature of the long sales cycle for stadium naming rights means it’s difficult for people to commit given they have other calls for their resources which can often be limited, especially on the smaller, developing Caribbean islands.”

The Tier One Worldwide agency will work with Khan Consulting on the sponsor search. Tier One founder Bruce Hayward said that it would not be limited to English or Caribbean brands when searching for a sponsor, with companies in Asia and Australia to also be considered.

Hayward’s evaluation process is set to conclude next month, after which point Khan Consulting will begin its search.

“We don’t just want a partnership where a brand puts its name to the stadium,” said Hayward. “We want to make sure it has the character of the venue, with the brand helping to improve the customer and venue experience across the events it holds.”

Image: ROxBo