Naming Rights Deal Whacked
The deal was announced May 3 after the previous sponsor, WisePies Pizza & Salad, agreed to terminate its existing contract with the school for the arena, affectionately known as “The Pit,” two-and-a-half years in. That deal was for $5 million over 10 years, and began in December 2014.
The new sponsor, Dreamstyle Remodeling, operates in five states and is based out of Albuquerque. The sponsorship will see Dreamstyle paying $9 million toward athletics and $1 million to another special fund supporting UNM entities like its children’s hospital and school of management, according to the Albuquerque Journal.
WisePies’ now-terminated payment play required $100,000 a year for the first two years and $600,000 a year after that, meaning that at the time of termination, the company had paid UNM $800,000. Prior to the new deal being announced, UNM publicly sought WisePies to end the agreement, to which it assented.
“I wouldn’t say there’s a bad side to (the deal), more like a disappointing side,” WisePies co-founder Steve Chavez told the Journal. “So many people have negative and often incorrect things to say about our company because they felt like we took away the name of the Pit.” WisePies had a number of tax issues in the last several years, many involving co-founder Mike Baird, the paper reported.