‘To link themselves with an athletic department when their business is locking people up, it just doesn’t connect to me really well.’
‘When you look at other things that GEO gives to, it’s generally in communities where they either have contracts or are seeking contracts, and certainly Florida is a state where GEO has tremendous interest.’
Major football stadium in Florida to be named after private prison company
Florida Atlantic University’s football stadium will be named after sponsor GEO Group Inc
The private prison company is the second largest operator in America
A new 30,000-seat football stadium will be named after America’s second largest private prison operator as part of a $6million (£3.92million) sponsorship deal.
Florida Atlantic University announced the partnership with GEO Group Inc, which runs 101 prison facilities with about 73,000 beds, on Tuesday raising questions about the suitability of the match.
The university in Florida had been looking for a stadium sponsor for more than two years after spending $70million (£45.7million) building the major stadium, home of the Owls football team.
The donation from the prison company’s charitable foundation is the ‘largest one-time gift in the history of FAU athletics,’ the university said, and will be paid out to the university over 12 years.
Critics have been quick to comment on the partnership.
Paul Swangard, managing director of the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center at the University of Oregon’s business school, was quoted by The Huffington Post saying: ‘It appears to be a charitable gift that is trying to be a marketing vehicle, and it just doesn’t make a lot of sense.