There's encouraging news out of Nashville
this morning, as the Sommet Group
has agreed to a long-term arena naming rights deal with the Nashville Predators. The erstwhile Gaylord Entertainment Center/Nashville Arena will now be called the "Sommet Center
This spring, the Sommet Group participated as a title sponsor of the Predators (brief) playoff run, and this commitment should help the Predators build their long term base in the Music City. All along, owner Craig Liepold has discussed the need to build stronger ties in the business community, and this deal represents two significant steps forward in that regard. First, he's landed a local firm for the naming rights (the Sommet Group is based in nearby Franklin
), as opposed to a large national firm that's just looking for a billboard to put their name on.
Secondly, however, the Sommet Group represents a good partner for the Predators - they are in the business of outsourcing back-office processes (i.e. Human Resources, Payroll, IT), and as such, have ties to a vast number of small- to mid-size businesses, the types of companies that might be good candidates to buy a few tickets each here or there, but are very difficult to market to. It's one thing to lobby a big firm like Nissan
to buy some season tickets, but going door-to-door to the gazillion smaller firms is laborious and unprofitable. Now, the Predators can hook up with the Sommet Group to offer promotions and incentives through their network and hopefully build a stronger corporate support base.
So three cheers for the Sommet Center (and by the way, it's pronounced so-may