Miami Heat home ground now Kaseya Center



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Miami Heat arena naming rights Image: Miami Heat

The National Basketball Association (NBA) team Miami Heat, the Miami-Dade County and Kaseya, a global software firm headquartered in the City of Miami, have finalized an agreement to take over the naming rights of the Miami-Dade Arena in Miami, Florida (US), according to a team spokesperson.

‘Forbes’ stated that the arena will be known as the Kaseya Center through 2040 as per the terms of the agreement.

The Miami Heat is an American professional basketball team based in Miami, US. The Heat competes in the National Basketball Association (NBA) as a member of the league’s Eastern Conference Southeast Division. The club plays its home games at the Kaseya Center, and has won three NBA championships.

Miami, Florida (US)-based Kaseya is a premier provider of unified IT management and security software for managed service providers (MSPs) and small to medium-sized businesses (SMBS). Through its customer-centric approach, Kaseya delivers best-in-breed technologies that allow organizations to efficiently manage, secure and backup IT. Kaseya offers a broad array of IT management solutions, including well-known names: Kaseya, IT Glue, RapidFire Tools, Spanning Cloud Apps, ID Agent, Graphus, RocketCyber, TruMethods, and Unitrends.

The 19,600-capacity Kaseya Center (formerly known as the American Airlines Arena from 1999 to 2021, the FTX Arena from 2021 to 2023 and the Miami-Dade Arena in 2023) is a multipurpose arena located in Miami, Florida (US), along the Biscayne Bay. It was constructed beginning in 1998 as a replacement for the Miami Arena and designed by the architecture firms Arquitectonica and 360 Architecture. The arena is home to the Miami Heat of the National Basketball Association (NBA).

The Miami-Dade County, which owns the property at 601 Biscayne in downtown Miami, had been seeking a new agreement since FTX, the previous naming rights partner, had declared bankruptcy earlier this year. The Board of County Commission passed a resolution to accept Kaseya’s proposed bid in a meeting held recently.

Said Fred Voccola, Kaseya CEO, “As one of the most iconic venues in the world, we could not be more excited to officially rename the arena as the Kaseya Center and partner with the Miami Heat. Miami is our home, and having Kaseya showcased globally as synonymous with Miami is something we’re very proud of, and will provide significant value to our customers, employees and the community. The Miami Heat is widely recognized as a championship-level organization that has attained the highest levels of success, both on the court and in the community. As Kaseya has grown into the global leader in IT and security management software, we’re honored to partner with an iconic franchise that mirrors our own passion to achieve great things.”

‘Forbes’ further stated that as part of the terms of the resolution agreement, Kaseya is expected to hire thousands of employees to create employment opportunities throughout South Florida. The County will also receive regularly scheduled payments for the next 17 years, with those monies being allocated into an anti-gun violence trust fund.

Stated Daniella Levine Cava, Miami-Dade County Mayor, “We are proud to close this deal with a locally based company for the first time in the history of the Arena. Since Kaseya relocated its headquarters to Miami, it has demonstrated a real commitment to invest in our economy and our local talent by opening the door to the jobs of the future. This deal will not only allow us to continue investing in critical crime prevention programs, it will also strengthen our brand as a global, diverse and future-ready community.”

The deal provides some stability to a building that had undergone various changes over the last two years. The cryptocurrency exchange company FTX had successfully entered into a naming rights deal with the County in 2021 but that deal was voided as a result of FTX’s financial collapse. The building at 601 had been named simply ‘Miami-Dade Arena’ over the last two months. Before the FTX entered into a partnership with the County, the building had been known as the ‘American Airlines Arena’ since 1999, a span in which the Miami Heat won multiple championships and established itself as one of the consistent franchises in the NBA.

FTX was the world’s second largest cryptocurrency exchange – a Bahamian cryptocurrency exchange. The FTX was incorporated in Antigua and Barbuda and headquartered in The Bahamas (country in the Caribbean). The exchange was founded in 2019 and as of February 2022 had over one million users. The FTX also operated FTX.US, a separate exchange available to the residents of United States.

FTX Trading came under incredible controversy and accusations of mismanaging money from investors, and on November 11th last year the company did what many expected it would do by filing for bankruptcy.

Added Eric Woolworth, the team’s President of Business Operations, “We were all blindsided by what happened with FTX. It was nobody’s favorite time period. But I think the story here is how quickly we’ve been able to move on and find another partner. Sometimes in our business, teams and venues can go years without a naming rights partner. It’s a testament to our partnership with the County that we were able to move so quickly to find not only a new naming rights partner, but Kaseya, a local company, is hiring a lot of people here in the Miami-Dade County, and I think the industry they are in is a much more stable one than the one FTX was in. So, I think everybody feels really good about it. And we’re happy to welcome Kaseya to the family.”

While terms of the agreement are not set to officially begin until July 1st, 2023, fans will see changes almost immediately with a new logo prominently displayed on the court with other activations taking place throughout the length of the agreement, per Woolworth. The County will also be unrolling a public relations (PR) campaign to promote the partnership with Kaseya, a company that might be considered relatively unknown, especially in contrast to a brand as established as the American Airlines.

Despite the recent instability, the Heat executives are optimistic that this new partnership will be a successful one for all the parties involved.

Said Michael McCullough, the team’s Chief Marketing Officer, “For the first 21 years, we were known as the American Airlines Arena, and there was no doubt there. And then, you know, we had the hiccup with FTX. And what I’m expecting, and what I’m hoping is, 17 years from now, when you look back at the history of what will now be known as the Kaseya Center, you basically will know two naming rights partners, and the one that was in the middle is going to fade into obscurity, because it was only here for a short time, and you’re going to have American Airlines, and you’re going to have Kaseya. [FTX] will always be part of the history, and we’re not going to try to run or hide from that. But what we anticipate is, the name could say a center will become synonymous to the Heat, the County and the success that we bring to the region.”

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