Renaming Verizon Center?

WASHINGTON —Verizon Communications Inc.’s naming rights for Verizon Center will expire in 2018, and, while it could strike a satisfactory renewal agreement with owner Monumental Sports & Entertainment, there’s no guarantee it will.

Ted Leonsis’ Monumental, which owns the Wizards, Capitals and Mystics, has hired marketing firm MP & Silva to sell the arena’s naming rights.

MP & Silva also will be charged with the exploration of all commercial rights for the teams’ extensive calendar of events.

Monumental wants to show global advertisers its events are a chance to reach a unique audience.

“Washington is a vastly diverse global seat of government, culture and business. By expanding our reach we can expose the amazing opportunities here to a global marketplace while helping bring brands and other business opportunities to one of the most diverse and vibrant cities in the world,” says Monumental Sports & Entertainment President of Business Operations and Chief Commercial Officer Jim Van Stone.

Monumental Sports & Entertainment is the only privately-held company in a top 10 market that owns and operates three professional sports teams and its arena.

Verizon Center opened in 1997 as MCI Center. It became Verizon Center after Verizon acquired MCI in 2006.

Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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