New Orleans Pelicans and Smoothie King renew their arena naming rights agreement

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The New Orleans Pelicans and Smoothie King have agreed to renew their arena naming rights contract, the club announced Tuesday.

The arena will “retain its distinctive identity as the Smoothie King Center for the foreseeable future,” the Pelicans said in a statement.

Neither the club nor Smoothie King released details on the specific length or value of the agreement. The initial agreement, reached in 2014, ran for 10 years through the current NBA season and reportedly had an estimated value approaching $40 million.

The Pelicans’ lease at the 24-year-old arena is due to expire next summer. But the club has said it intends to exercise an option to remain in the Smoothie King Center through at least the end of the current decade while exploring longer-term plans that could include proposals for a new arena or extensive renovations to the current building.

“We are thrilled to extend our relationship with Smoothie King and maintain the iconic Smoothie King Center as the home of the New Orleans Pelicans,” team owner Gayle Benson said. “Smoothie King’s commitment to wellness and community aligns perfectly with our values, and we look forward to continuing to build on the success we’ve achieved together.”

Smoothie King was founded in New Orleans five decades ago. It moved its headquarters to Dallas after signing the previous 10-year naming rights deal.

“We’re so excited to continue to be a part of the community and have a strong presence there through our stores and our partnership with the Pelicans,” Smoothie King owner Wan Kim said.

Reporting by The Associated Press.

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