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MetLife is first stadium sponsor for new Giants, Jets home

NEWARK, N.J. -- MetLife Inc. became the first of five major sponsors for the new Meadowlands stadium the New York Giants and Jets football teams will call home.

The deal was announced Monday, with no word on how much the insurance and financial services company will pay the teams for the advertising space.

A marketing expert said the deal could bring in $10 million to $15 million annually.

"They will be getting at least that much because they will be getting so much area inside the stadium," Deborah Cohn, a marketing professor at Touro College in New York, said Monday. "When people see their advertisements on TV, they will stand out."

Mark Lamping, president and chief executive officer of New Meadowlands Stadium Co., the teams' joint venture that is building and will operate the stadium, said there will be five major sponsors for the 82,500-seat stadium that is scheduled to open in 2010. The facility will be co-owned by the Giants and Jets, who both currently play at Giants Stadium.

As a so-called "cornerstone partner," MetLife will have the exclusive naming rights to brand one of the four main entrances to the stadium as well as one of the four scoreboards inside it.

The stadium will be named after one of the five sponsors, whose logo will appear both outside and inside the $1.3 billion stadium that is being built adjacent to Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Those naming rights could have an annual pricetag of at least $20 million.

MetLife also sponsors three blimps for sports events and television coverage of major PGA and USGA golf events, Major League Baseball and NFL games.

Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press

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