The Philadelphia Union have signed a multi-year stadium naming rights deal with Subaru of America.
The home of the Union will now be named Subaru Park, and Subaru will become the exclusive automaker partner of the club. It marks the first stadium naming rights deal for the automaker.
Subaru Park marks the third name for the 18,500-seat venue located in Chester, Pennsylvania, roughly 20 miles southwest of Philadelphia. Most recently, the venue was known as Talen Energy Stadium after its first iteration as PPL Park from 2010 to 2015. The stadium opened in 2010 alongside the Union’s launch in MLS.
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, and both Subaru and the Union declined to comment.
Most stadium naming rights deals in MLS are worth upwards of $3 million a year, according to sources. LAFC has the most lucrative naming rights deals for a soccer-specific stadium across the league, with the 15-year deal it signed in 2016 with Banc of California, which pays the club roughly $6.7 million a year.
Subaru becomes the third automaker to have its name on an MLS stadium, following Toyota Stadium in Frisco and Audi Field in Washington D.C. Audi is paying $4 million a year to DC United for the naming rights, which was the second-biggest naming rights deal in MLS when it was signed in 2017.
Talks between Subaru and the Union began last January when the club approached the carmaker about the Subaru Love Promise platform, which focuses on community service and volunteerism, Thomas J. Doll, president and CEO of Subaru of America, Inc., said in an email.
“From that meeting, we realized we could do more together,” Doll wrote in an email.
Along with becoming the Union’s official and exclusive automotive partner, Subaru will join it in committing to the greater Philadelphia area by producing a series of charitable programs that are an extension of that platform.
Doll also mentioned that the Subaru-Union partnership extends past community engagement and work with local animal shelters so match attendees have a dedicated area to interact with, and adopt, pets at each game.
“Whether it’s through protecting our environment, caring for those in need, supporting pets or the well-being of our youth, this partnership joins together to further the love of our Philadelphia Area Community,” Doll wrote.
In addition, the new partnership will bring upgrades to the stadium. A new high-dynamic range video board will be installed, as well as upgraded LED ribbons around the field as well as new monitors throughout the stadium and its concourses. Three new parking lots will also be added, and there will be more than 30 reserved spaces that will be made free-of-charge to Subaru drivers. The stadium will also feature a new premium VIP club that soft-opened during the playoffs last season.
“We are committed to working hand-in-hand to give back and create a better world for our fans and the people of the greater Philadelphia area,” Tim McDermott, president of the Philadelphia Union, said in a statement.
Doll is confident that Subaru’s Union ties will benefit not only each other, but the people that they share their city with.
“This is more than just a naming opportunity for Subaru,” Doll wrote. “The Union provides Subaru an opportunity to increase the reach of our commitment to better the lives of those in our local communities.”
“We hope that this helps in a number of areas, but the most important is to improve the lives of those in our communities,” Doll added. “And, hopefully we can also bring the sport of soccer to children in underserved communities.”