Patriots Name Stadium CMGI Field

Wednesday, August 23rd 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

BOSTON (AP) — The New England Patriots have agreed to a 15-year deal with CMGI Inc. to have the team's new stadium named CMGI Field.

The Andover-based firm that owns and invests in Internet companies will pay $7.6 million per year for the first 10 years, with inflation adjustments for years 11-15.

CMGI said Wednesday that the agreement also called for its companies to host the Patriots' Internet site and manage Webcasts of team news and special events.

``Partnering with The New England Patriots enables us to strengthen our local presence while simultaneously reaching a broader national and international audience,'' David Wetherell, chairman and chief executive of CMGI, said in a statement.

Robert Kraft, chairman and owner of the New England Patriots, said: ``It was important to us that we select a partner who is helping to create the building blocks of the new economy, a company with strong and visionary leadership and a company that shares our commitment to New England. CMGI is at the top of the list in all three categories and we believe they will be the perfect partner.''

Kraft and his son, Jonathan, had been in talks with a number of companies interested in naming rights since the Krafts were granted state and local approvals last year to build the $325 million stadium, which will also be home to the MLS' New England Revolution.

According to the Chicago-based Team Marketing Report Inc., the value of naming rights partnerships for new major league stadiums has increased sharply over the past two years. Recent deals average $8 million to $9 million for team owners.

Construction already is under way at the site, next to the current Foxboro Stadium, about 25 miles south of Boston, and the new stadium is scheduled to open in 2002.