What was once old is now new again — ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum.
The home of the Oakland Raiders and Athletics has reverted back to its original name after McAfee Inc. decided not to renew its 10-year contract with the stadium — leaving stadium officials looking for a new sponsor.
The deal with McAfee, which expired Sept. 18, called for the security software developer to make payments of nearly $1.1 million per year with 5 percent annual increases.
Jennifer Cooke, marketing director of the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum and its sister facility the Oracle Arena, said McAfee chose not to renew the deal. She added the Coliseum's governing board, the Oakland Alameda County Coliseum Authority, has just started to approach other companies to gauge interest.
"That process has just started, and I do not know who has been contacted as of yet," Cooke said.
Cooke said the contract with McAfee prohibited the authority from starting new contract talks for the naming rights with any other company until the McAfee deal had officially expired.
In a statement, Ignacio De La Fuente, Oakland City Council president and chair of the authority, said the expired deal opens new doors for the Coliseum.
"It's unfortunate to see McAfee pass on renewing their contract," he said, "but this leaves the opportunity open to another business to brand our facility."
The Coliseum's name was changed to Network Associates Coliseum in 1998, after the company agreed to a five-year deal with option for an additional five years. In 2004, Network Associates Coliseum was renamed McAfee Coliseum, in accordance with the company being renamed.
What kind of deal the authority can get — especially in treacherous economic times — this go-around remains to be seen.
In 2006, Redwood City-based software developer Oracle Corp. entered into a 10-year naming rights deal for the arena that sits next to the Coliseum off Interstate 880 for a reported $30 million.
That deal ended one of the longest naming rights searches in the history of sports, which included an agreement in 2003 between the Golden State Warriors — who play in the arena — and the Coliseum Authority where the Warriors were given three years to find a naming rights sponsor.
Stadium naming rights have been in the news recently with the New York Yankees' new stadium set to open next year. It was reported by several media outlets this month that Charlotte-based Bank of America Corp. is close to finalizing with the Yankees for the stadium. Some say the deal may be worth more than the New York Mets' deal with Citibank and Barclays' deal with the New Jersey Nets' new home, each of which was said to be for an average of $20 million a year for more than 20 years.
Reach Chris Metinko at 510-763-5418 or firstname.lastname@example.org.