Albany County officials review four offers for Times Union Center’s new name

ALBANY – County officials are reviewing four offers for naming rights for the current Times Union Center.

The Downtown County Arena needs a new sponsor after The Times Union decided not to extend its contract in late September.

Mary Rozak, county communications director, said a review of the offers was underway, but there was no timeline for its completion or other details on the proposals available at this time.

“We plan to move on to legislative committees for action to be taken in December and the new name (to be) in early 2022,” Rozak said in an email.

The Times Union Center referred to the Albany County Executive Office when asked for comment.

Large white letters have displayed the Times Union name on the South Pearl Street site for 15 years. The media company first signed for a 10-year contract and then got a five-year extension.

The local newspaper paid $ 350,000 a year and expanded advertising for the center in its online and print publications as part of its deal, according to Times Union records.

Hearst Media, the parent company of Times Union, said it will explore other marketing options with the center, but is also partnering with nearby TV stations and spending more on YouTube and advertising on social networks.

“With the growth of digital subscriptions and new hires in our newsroom, now is the time to open up the opportunity for another company to put their name on the scene as we focus on reaching new audiences. different ways and duplicate our commitment to meeting our region’s need for high quality and trusted local journalism, ”Times Union editor George Hearst III said in a September statement.

Before the Times Union name floated above the county stage, the $ 68 million event center was originally called the Knickerbocker Arena when it opened in 1990.

Pepsi, the famous soft drink company, got the naming rights in 1997 when it agreed to pay $ 300,000 each year just for the name. The company ultimately invested around $ 4.5 million in the venue for its name, rights and promotions, the Times Union previously reported.

When Pepsi’s contract was closed in 2006, the county struggled to find another part to fill. With no incoming offers, the county has sought local businesses for a new sponsor, according to the newspaper’s records.

The arena was renamed Times Union Center in 2007.

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