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the-margin:-bidet-maker-tushy-wants-to-rename-buffalo-bills’-stadium,-but-is-it-flush-with-enough-cash?
the-margin:-bidet-maker-tushy-wants-to-rename-buffalo-bills’-stadium,-but-is-it-flush-with-enough-cash?

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The Margin: Bidet maker Tushy wants to rename Buffalo Bills’ stadium, but is it flush with enough cash?

The Margin

$12.5 million offer for naming rights likely to draw chuckles, but do little more than circle the drain

A view of the Buffalo Bills’ stadium in 2016.


Getty Images

Some say the Buffalo Bills’ stadium is a dump. Now it could be named for a toilet fixture.

In what is either an epic publicity stunt or a genius PR move (perhaps both?), Tushy LLC, a New York maker of toilet bidets, says it is seeking acquire the naming rights to the Bills stadium.

In a statement late Wednesday, which was confirmed by a Tushy spokesperson and included the term “booty wonderland,” the company said it will offer up to $12.5 million for naming rights, rebranding it “Tushy Stadium.” Tushy also said it would “deploy portable toilets equipped with its bidet across parking lots and tailgating venues” for Bills home games, and would pursue a college bowl game that it would call — of course — the “Toilet Bowl.”

Earlier in the day, the Buffalo News reported that apparel maker New Era Cap Co. had pulled out of its naming-rights deal, and that the team was looking for a new stadium sponsor. The New Era deal was reportedly worth about $4 million a year for eight years.

But before you order your Tushy Stadium sweatshirt, there is much reason for skepticism.

It was unclear how many years Tushy’s offer was for, but it seems unlikely the bid will do more than circle the drain. Buffalo’s New Era deal — which totalled about three times Tushy’s bid — was one of the cheapest in the NFL, according to a report by SportsProMedia. Stadium naming rights generally seek long-term contracts for significantly more money, from companies significantly more flush with cash.

According to Crunchbase, Tushy has raised just $2.6 million in two funding rounds since it was founded in 2014, with a valuation between $1 million and $10 million as of August 2019, according to PrivCo.

The stadium in Orchard Park, N.Y., is one of the NFL’s oldest, built in 1973, and was originally called Rich Stadium until being rechristened Ralph Wilson Stadium in 1997. Its naming rights were sold for the first time to New Era in 2016.

Whatever the name, the stadium doesn’t have the best reputation — the top result of a quick Google search was a TripAdvisor review from 2013 headlined “It’s a dump!” and The Sporting News in 2019 ranked it 27th of the NFL’s 31 stadiums.

On the bright side, the Bills themselves are nowhere near as crappy as they used to be; they finished 10-6 last season, and have made the playoffs in two of the past three seasons, after an 18-year drought.

The NFL season is scheduled to start in September, but likely in empty — or at least partially empty — stadiums due to the coronavirus pandemic. New York state guidelines also currently ban fans from attending any sports events.

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