Newcastle United have responded to the question of whether St James Park will carry a new sponsor’s name when the Wonga deal finishes at the end of this (2016/17) season.
Mike Ashley had renamed St James Park the ‘S***** D***** Arena’ but with no cash paid by SD to Newcastle United for the privilege.
When Wonga took up the shirt sponsorship, it was announced by the club that stadium naming rights were also included in the deal, with Wonga said to have chosen to return the name to ‘St James Park’ as a goodwill gesture to fans.
At the latest Newcastle United Fans Forum held 10 August 2016, the club were asked what would happen at the end of this season, once the Wonga deal came to its conclusion.
The minutes of the fans forum have just been released (10 days after the meeting…) and it has been revealed that whilst Newcastle United are in ‘discussions with a number of potential new partners’, any deal will NOT involve renaming St James Park.
Newcastle United Fans Forum minutes
The club confirmed that its contract with Wonga will definitely expire at the end of the current season and the club is in discussions with a number of potential new partners.
The club outlined that shirt sponsorship remains a key revenue driver for the club and it was therefore important for the club to secure the right sponsor for next season and beyond.
‘A question from a supporter which asked if the club would give fans the option of printing a charity on the front of the shirt next season.’
The club is not intending to have a blank shirt next season and because shirt sponsor contracts stipulate that a company would have the right to its logo on all kit, the club will not be offering a printing option on the front of the shirt in the way requested.
‘Asked if the stadium name will change once the Wonga sponsorship agreement ends (Wonga previously purchased the stadium naming rights)’
The club confirmed that the stadium name will remain the same.
‘Asked if the club would be looking closely at its partner brands.’
The club explained that it has a clear idea about the style of brand it would like to see on Newcastle United shirts but also had to take revenue potential into consideration and strike a fair balance.