Outrage as new Perth Stadium gets sponsor name

Telecommunications giant Optus has bought the naming rights at Perth's new 60,000-seat sports venue, but it will be known by the generic name Perth Stadium for international cricket matches.

 

The $1.46 billion ground will be called Optus Stadium, with a 10-year naming rights deal struck.

The WA government won't release the value of the deal, but there is speculation it is worth more than $50 million and Tourism Minister Paul Papaplia and Sports Minister Mick Murray said the value of it exceeded expectations.

The West Coast Eagles will kick off their AFL season at Optus Stadium in round one in March next year but the first football match there will involve the Fremantle Dockers AFLW team on February 10.

The new stadium. Pic: AAP

The first event could be a one-day international cricket match between Australia and England on January 28.

It would be called Perth Stadium then with no Optus branding allowed because Cricket Australia require "clean" stadiums without sponsor names to avoid any conflicts with competitors, Mr Papalia said.

There had been some opposition including from the WA Tourism Council and previous premier Colin Barnett that giving away the naming rights to a corporation was wrong and would rob the state of an opportunity to promote itself.

Some stadiums in other states have retained traditional names, such as the Adelaide Oval, MCG, SCG and the Gabba.

However, Mr Papalia said he thought the marketing value of keeping the name "Perth" was inflated.

"This just means this is money we don't have to get from the taxpayer," he told 6PR radio on Wednesday.

Other events the government paid to host, such as Bledisloe Cup rugby or State of Origin rugby league, would have contractual obligations that compel providers, including commentators, to talk about Perth and WA.

The deal fulfilled the new government's election commitment to sell the naming rights to Perth Stadium and the 15,000-seat indoor Perth Arena to deliver revenue.

Many angry punters took to Twitter to criticise the naming of the new stadium.








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