Monday, March 29, 2010

Indianapolis Shriners sue Live Nation, Old National over Murat renaming

From the Indianapolis Business Journal today:

The Murat Temple Association has filed suit against Live Nation Worldwide and Old National Bank with hopes of overturning a naming-rights deal for a landmark entertainment and hospitality venue in downtown Indianapolis.

The lawsuit was filed March 26 in Marion County Superior Court.

The Murat Temple Association is a Shriners affiiate that owns the Murat Centre, which on March 16 was renamed the "Old National Centre" in a three-year deal between the bank and Live Nation. Terms of the naming-rights deal were not disclosed.

MTA's suit alleges that Live Nation's lease does not include rights to rename the building, and that the name change "caused Shriners to be held in lesser light by the general public, who erroneously believe Shriners were responsible for the name change, and from whom money is raised to support ... Shriners Hospital for Children."

The lawsuit says MTA notified Live Nation that it did not have the right to change the facility's name more than six weeks before the official renaming took place.

The Shriners are seeking an injunction to reverse the name change and unspecified damages.


More.

The Murat Shrine Temple Association owns the building, and LiveNation leases the theatre and the Egyptian Room as part of a 50 year agreement. LiveNation says they have the right to rename the building, MSTA says they don't.

2 comments:

Widow's Son said...

Is there a relationship between the bank and LiveNation, other than the naming rights deal? Or did LiveNation simply sell rights to name the building?

The temple organization is probably correct that LiveNation had no right to sell naming rights... but I think the temple group is kinda stretching things a bit by including that "for the children" language in their lawsuit. It seems a blatant attempt to gain emotional support to what should be a cut and dried legal business matter. By opening that can of worms about donating to the Shriners' Hospitals, they may end up having to show how much really went to the hospitals, and as we've seen elsewhere, not nearly as much passes from the Shrine to the hospitals as one might think.

-- W.S.

Chris Hodapp said...

More info today.

IBJ: Answer to Murat's naming-rights fight likely to be found in lease

Odd the article says it's a 100 year lease, when other sources have said 50.