A stadium by any other name

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FIRST NATIONAL Bank’s rights to the naming of Joburg’s biggest soccer stadium were confirmed in court this week, chief marketing officer Bernice Samuels said.

“For the time being, this court order resolves the on-going dispute in terms of the conduct of a third party and confirms the stadium name as ‘FNB Stadium’,” Samuels said in a statement.

“The bank is pleased with the successful outcome.”

An interim court order obtained this week required Stadium Management SA to refer to the venue and/or the stadium whether direct or indirectly, only as the “FNB Stadium”.

No reference should be made to the Soccer City Complex or Soccer City or any other name or venue.

The court order further stipulated that, in contracts concluded with third parties for the use of the stadium and venue, such third parties be required to refer to the stadium as “FNB Stadium”.

In 2004, full naming rights were granted to the then FirstRand Bank Limited, for a period of 10 years, from July of that year.

During the 2010 Fifa World Cup, in compliance with Fifa’s requirements, FNB agreed to the name and logo of the stadium being changed for a period starting three months before the opening match of the competition.

The waiver ended a week after the last match of the tournament, which was played on July 11, 2010. – Sapa.


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