This past Sunday workers erected a Microsoft logo atop the former Nokia Theater in downtown Los Angeles’s LA Live as part of a multiyear agreement with AEG, the sporting and music entertainment presenter and LA Live developer.
The Hollywood Reporter notes this is Microsoft’s first naming-rights deal for a sports or entertainment building and that Microsoft inherited the original Nokia-AEG naming rights for LA Live’s Theater in its 2013 acquisition of the Finnish communications and information technology company’s mobile phone business.
The new naming-rights for the former Nokia Theater show Microsoft is expanding its advertising into the entertainment market as Shawn Sanford, senior director of lifestyle marketing for Microsoft, told The Hollywood Reporter:
“We haven’t done much work in this area in the past. It’s a cool platform to showcase our technology in a new light. It’s part of a brand-perception shift about what we are saying about Microsoft and how we shift the perception of us in the entertainment community.”
Microsoft’s deal with AEG won’t stop at a new sign for the theater as The Hollywood Reporter also notes the new Microsoft Theater will receive a “technology refresh” with “improvements to the green rooms, writers’ rooms, and staging areas to better serve promoters and artists.” The Microsoft Theater will also be redone with new seats and carpeting in a different color scheme.
Microsoft Branding won’t be just limited to the 7,100 seat theater, as LA Live’s 40,000 square foot outdoor plaza will be known as Microsoft Square and Club Nokia, a 2,300 seat venue in in the Plaza, will see a future rebranding as well.
The new Microsoft Theater will give the technology company a great deal of added exposure in a variety of entertainment, sports, and pop culture events as the location hosts the BET Awards, ESPN’s ESPY Awards, the Emmy Awards, the Los Angeles Film Festival, and the MTV Movie Awards. Located in downtown Los Angeles, the Microsoft Theater is also directly adjacent to AEG’s Staples Center, home of the Los Angeles Lakers, the Los Angeles Clippers, and the Los Angeles Kings.