If we needed further proof that scammingÂ people is where the money is, we need only take a look at ARCO Arena in Sacramento, California, homeÂ of the Sacramento KingsÂ of the NBA. Not that it’s surprising that Atlantic Richfield CompanyÂ has made enough money to have aÂ sports and special events arenaÂ named for it, but it might be a little surprising, if not disheartening for you regular Skepchick readers, to hear that ARCO Arena will soon be renamed Power Balance Pavilion.
That’s right. The fancy schmancy (supposedly magic) rubber bands that I’ve discussedÂ here, and here, and that Rebecca followed up on here, have earned the Power Balance company enough money that it can now muscle out a company like ARCO for a highly visible marketing endeavor.
Okay, so oil and gas has had its public relations troubles lately, and it appears that ARCO has simply opted out, butÂ you still have toÂ sell a hell of a lot of hologram-embedded bracelets designed to interact with the body’s natural energy flow to afford naming rights of a major sports arena, evenÂ in a small or mid-sized market.
Financial terms of the deal have not beenÂ disclosed, butÂ ARCO, which is ending a 25-year relationship with the organization, has been paying about $750,000 a year for the naming rights, according to the Sacramento Bee. So it’s conceivable that Power Balance will pay at least that much.
Now, you might be wondering how or ifÂ Power Balance LLCÂ will keepÂ playing in the big leaguesÂ now that everyone —Â including organizations within the sports industry —Â is debunking the new age garbage they claim for their power bands. The company itselfÂ recently admitted there is no credible scientific evidence behind claims that its products improve anything, except perhaps a kitschy outfit.
Well,Â not to be non-committal, butÂ this could play outÂ either way. Money buys a lot of privileges, and a shitload of money buys even more. So it’s possible that with an ever more negative light being shined on the bracelets, Power Balance could change the focus ofÂ its business to more conventional sports equipment. It already has name recognition, several star athletes onÂ its payroll, and a viable infrastructure in place. The shift wouldn’t be too difficult. Power Balance is not such a bad name for a running shoe, is it?
On the other hand, there is precedent set for struggling/bankrupt companies swiftly losing naming rights to stadiums. Enron Field was home to the Houston Astros of Major League Baseball untilÂ the energy companyÂ had its highly publicized troubles. The stadium was renamed Minute Maid Park after one year, and no one has looked back.
For now though, we’ll have to wait and see if Power Balance makes it through the five-year contract it’s entered.Â If nothing else, itÂ might be cool, if they adorn the arena with enormous holograms.
Sacramento readers, keep us informed.