There are currently some rumors floating around that a naming rights deal could be on the horizon for the Jacksonville Jaguars. Currently, Jacksonville Municipal Stadium has been unnamed since the end of the 2006 season.
Before the 2007 season, there was belief that the Jaguars were on the verge of a lucrative offer when they turned down an offer that would pay the team under $5 million a year in the hopes a better deal could get hammered out. Fast forward to 2010 and the stadium is still unnamed.
The new naming partner is a Jacksonville based company, Everbank, Big Cat Country has learned.
Everbank recently acquired 13 branches of the now defunt Bank of Florida Corp. in the Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, Tampa, and Naples/Ft. Meyers regions. Everbank is an interesting company in the fact that it's big (roughly $9.6 billion in assets as of March 2010), but it previously only had 4 branches, all in the Jacksonville area. The vast majority of their business is done on-line or over the phone, but the company is based out of Jacksonville.
Everbank is one of the few privately owned banks that was able to turn a profit during this latest recession, so it's quite possible the Jacksonville based bank has some "extra cash" laying around and may seem it feasible to invest in the local NFL team being that Everbank is a local, but national, type of company. Having the now Jacksonville Municipal Stadium renamed to something along the lines of "Everbank Field" would bring more exposure nationally to a company, as previously mentioned, does the majority of it's business nationally. Everbank currently sponsors the club section of the adjacent Jacksonville Arena.
It's unknown how much the deal would be for, but the previous arangement with Altell Wireless was for a mere $620,000 a year for 10 years. Contracts now a days are banking in near double-digits of millions.
There have also been rumors of W.W. Gay Mechanical, CSX, and Johnson & Johnson involved in naming deals. The Jaguars were rumored to be close to locking in a deal with Acuvue (Johnson & Johnson) back in 2007, but were reportedly scared off at leaks of a potential deal. At some point the Jaguars will need to find a naming sponsor if they're serious about remaining in the city of Jacksonville. Missing a name on the stadium is missing out on a direct revenue stream for the franchise.
There is speculation that a deal could be announced within the next 24 hours, as there is a press conference scheduled for 2 P.M. on Tuesday.