Despite withdrawing from a major Kentucky Derby sponsorship, Yum Brands says it is committed to its naming rights agreement for the KFC Yum Center.
It was recently revealed that Yum–the parent company of brands such as KFC, Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell–is pulling out of its agreement to be the title sponsor of the Kentucky Derby. That decision comes just two years into a five-year commitment that was to run through 2020.
This prompted some concerns that the company could also pull the plug on its naming rights deal for the KFC Yum Center, the home to University of Louisville basketball. The company, however, says that it is not planning to make any changes to its naming rights agreement for the venue, something that comes as a relief to arena officials. More from The Courier-Journal:
Yum for its part paid $13.5 million in 2010 for decade-long naming rights. And under terms of that contract, the parties may discuss an extension starting next year.
Yum’s decision last year to transfer five top executives from Louisville offices in Plano, Texas, and trim the local corporate workforce already had raised questions about whether the city was a company headquarters in name only.
CEO Greg Creed said that the company remains “committed to Louisville as our headquarters and to our 800 employees who are based here.”
Scott Cox, chairman of the authority which oversees the center, said that knowing Yum remains committed “makes my day. We love the relationship that we have with them. It’s an iconic building and an iconic name. We’re just thrilled to have this partnership with them.”
The downtown Louisville venue has been known as the KFC Yum Center since its opening in 2010.