Tuesday morning, the Columbus Crew announced its naming rights for the new stadium with Lower Mortgage, meaning the new home of the Black & Gold will be known as Lower.com Field. The company, which is headquartered in the Columbus, Ohio suburb of New Albany, is yet another local business partner of Ohio’s capital soccer club.
While many Crew fans may not have heard of Lower before Tuesday’s announcement at the new stadium, Lower is certainly familiar with the Crew. And how Lower became the name on the Black & Gold’s new downtown jewel is quite the story.
Lower CEO Dan Snyder is a Crew fan but it took his friends pressuring him to buy season tickets for the 2021 season and fear of missing out on a unique experience to start the gears turning on a business partnership with the club.
“I don’t know if you can live in Columbus and not be a Crew fan,” said Snyder during the press conference announcing the naming rights. “We knew the stadium was being built, obviously. A bunch of my friends were buying season tickets and so they had created this FOMO (fear of missing out) in me where they were like ‘Oh, you haven’t gotten yours yet? You need to get them.’ You need to get a suite or something for your company. So when they called, I immediately jumped on it and I thought it would be really neat for our company and to support the community.”
Lower has seen a meteoric rise since its founding in 2018. Snyder said the company has just under 1,000 employees in the Columbus area and locations in 40 states in just the three years it has been in existence. The goal for Snyder and Lower is to become the number one digital home lender in the world, similar aspirations to the Crew front office that wants to continue to grow its global brand.
With the Black & Gold’s growth will also come the growth of all these local brands they have partnered with the club, including Lower Mortgage, Donatos, OhioHealth, Nationwide, Vertiv, AEP and many more. Crew owner Dee Haslam emphasized that the naming rights sponsor for the stadium was more about a local company than finding a flashy name that fans may have heard of prior.
“Obviously, a local company was really important,” said Haslam. “And Lower.com has a lot of the same characteristics we think about. High-performance was something that was really important but just their mindset of how they approach things, it really fit into what we were doing. We couldn’t be more delighted with our partnership.”
The first stadium rights sponsor for the Crew was MAPFRE Insurance, which is headquartered in Webster, Massachusetts. Lower.com Field is another step towards the Black & Gold front office’s commitment to increasing the global brand of the club, soccer and the city of Columbus as a whole.
“When you talk to someone like Dan and you see his vision for his company and his employees and the culture they are trying to create at Lower, it resonates with us,” said Crew president and general manager Tim Bezbatchenko. “Even though we (the Crew) have been around for a long time, in some ways we are creating a new identity and we’re trying to lift Columbus to new heights.”
Lower.com Field officially opens on July 3 when the Black & Gold hosts the New England Revolution, the same team that helped open historic Crew Stadium in 1999.