Browns announce stadium naming-rights deal

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So now when the Browns lose and a fan randomly shouts insults at the Factory of Sadness, it’ll have an official name.

The FirstEnergy Factory of Sadness.

The Browns announced a “long-term partnership” with FirstEnergy Corp. to apply the company’s name to Cleveland Browns Stadium.

“This is a great day for all of us and it builds on the momentum we have experienced as we enter into a new era of Cleveland Browns Football,” owner Jimmy Haslam said.  “The Browns and FirstEnergy have enjoyed a tremendous relationship for more than a decade, and since our arrival back in August, it has been our pleasure getting to know [CEO] Tony [Alexander], Chairman of the Board George Smart, President of FirstEnergy Utilities Chuck Jones and many other FirstEnergy employees.  As native Ohioans, they understand the value of the Browns brand, and like all of our fans, they have lived and died with this football team.  Our core values of being the best at everything we do are clearly aligned, and because of their commitment to the City of Cleveland and to all of Northeast Ohio, we felt this would be the perfect partnership.  Plus, it’s a great name for the stadium — FirstEnergy.”

Actually, it’ll be FirstEnergy Stadium.  Not FirstEnergy Factory of Sadness.  Or FirstEnergy Sadness Factory.

The agreement is subject to approval by Cleveland City Council.  And some fans may want Cleveland City Council to reject the deal.  But there’s no reason to balk; with more revenue, Haslam can reinvest more money in the team.  Which, in theory, will make the team even better.

“Having a stadium naming rights deal in place was extremely important for us as we look towards the future, and it was just as imperative to accomplish this with a strong, regional company such as FirstEnergy,” Browns CEO Joe Banner said.   “We are excited about what this long-term partnership means, allowing both the Browns and FirstEnergy to derive many benefits from this association.  This deal is a great example of why we feel very good about the direction our organization is headed, and we believe it can serve as a catalyst for many other positive developments moving forward.”

Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.  They inevitably will be once Cleveland City Council takes up the deal.  Which means that they should have just gone ahead and announced the terms now.