By Sophie Boot
Spark New Zealand will take over the naming rights for Auckland's 12,000-seat Vector Arena starting in April 2017 and rename the venue the Spark Arena.
The telecommunications provider said in a statement it would be the new naming rights, brand and technology partner for the venue, which is owned by Live Nation New Zealand and MHC Investments. Spark declined to say what the cost of the contract was, citing commercial sensitivity.
Vector was the previous holder of the naming rights, having signed a 10-year contract for an undisclosed amount in 2006. The NZ Herald reported at the time that the contract was valued at $500,000 a year.
Spark's managing director Simon Moutter said the company was looking to develop "useful and amazing technology solutions for the venue to give New Zealanders an even richer and highly shareable experience."
"Seeing your favourite musician or entertainer appear on stage for the first time is an experience designed to be captured and shared with friends and family and the role of technology is key to that," Moutter said.
Live Nation NZ chief executive Michael Coppel said possibilities for innovation across digital platforms made the partnership with Spark exciting.
Live Nation NZ is indirectly 70 percent owned by New York Stock Exchange-listed Live Nation Entertainment, one of the world's largest producers of live music, with the remaining 30 percent owned by MHC, an investment vehicle of Michael Coppel and Michelle Coppel.
Spark shares last traded at $3.71, and have risen 13.8 percent this year.