The New Orleans Pelicans and Louisiana-based Smoothie King have reached a 10-year agreement to rename the New Orleans Arena as the Smoothie King Center.
Pelicans President Dennis Lauscha said such a deal had been a "gigantic" piece of owner Tom Benson's business plan since he bought the long-struggling small-market franchise from the NBA in the spring of 2012.
"Finding a naming rights partner was key to the long-term financial viability of this franchise in this market," Lauscha said.
Benson, who has owned the Saints since 1985, purchased city's NBA franchise — formerly called the Hornets — for $338 million and has consolidated the headquarters and many of the business operations of both clubs. The hope was that with the two franchises sharing resources and cross-promoting one another, the region could better support two major professional sports teams.
Officials with both the club and Smoothie King declined to release financial terms of the deal, which also gives Smoothie King an option for a 10-year extension.