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Exclusive: Lions snub big-money offers to rename The Den

© Edmund Boyden
© Edmund Boyden

TWO companies bidding for the naming rights to The Den have seen six-figure offers rejected.

Millwall turned down the lucrative proposals because both bidders wanted to totally change the historic name of the stadium.

Club bosses are searching for a partner to sponsor the ground but have no intention of "selling the soul", commercial director Alan Williams said.

Williams told the Southwark News: "We had two options but we turned them both down because they didn't fit with what we wanted to do.

"For me, it is fundamentally important that we keep 'The Den' in our name – and they didn't want that. The offers we had were from brands that didn't really work for us.

"We would have just been taking the money and while that it very important, we have to be respectful to our supporters and the history of the club.

"It would have to be 'The something Den' or 'The Den powered by something'.

"But whatever we go with, it's really important that we don't completely change the name and devalue our brand. The options that we had weren't right.

"The two we looked at were £280,000 and £300,000-a-season, which is worth more than our shirt sponsor.

"That's big money but it wasn't big enough for us to devalue our brand – changing the name of The Den has to be financially viable for us.

"A very difficult decision had to be made by the board but we're continually talking to people and we do have options."

Williams is confident of finding a sponsor because of The Den's proximity to train tracks which ferry commuters in and out of London Bridge station.

He added that the the corner of the stadium is an ideal spot for advertising.

"We have a very powerful location," Williams explained.

"100,000 people go past the stadium every day on the train, which means we have a big eyeball value."

Alex Aldridge

(@accordingtoaldo)

52 thoughts on “Exclusive: Lions snub big-money offers to rename The Den

  • July 17, 2014 at 09:32
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    We'll not sell our soul...the fans really like to hear words as these!!!
    COYL!!!

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    • July 17, 2014 at 10:52
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      Everyone agrees that we do not want the name of the ground changed so why don't we start an appeal. There must be at least 30,000 Millwall fans out there if we all chipped in a tenner then we could call it whatever we wanted, or we could have a vote on the top five names.

      I think "F*** off you northern b******* and take the West Ham scum with you stadium" has a nice ring to it !!!!!! :-O

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      • July 18, 2014 at 08:53
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        @robcmay: Brilliant! Has my vote! lol

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  • July 17, 2014 at 09:37
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    I think everyone can agree that no matter what it gets changed to, it will always be known as the den to us fans. So what does it matter if the club gets an extra 300,000 a year?

    what is promising is that 100,000 go past the den daily which means there should be some more offers coming our way.

    Then Den. Powered by Sainsburys or nah?

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  • July 17, 2014 at 09:38
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    ONLY COS THE MONEY WAS NOT ENOUGH

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    • July 17, 2014 at 09:58
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      @terry the turk lion: Yeah if it was £500k a season then I'd be all for it! Us fans have to remember the club is not made of money and it was a brave move to turn that offer down in the 1st place!

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      • July 17, 2014 at 10:21
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        @jim1222:
        hmmm, you know I am the eternal optimist but it would be like selling our soul to the devil, having said that we have to get more money in be it through the turnstiles which seems to be a problem or corporate prostitution.
        If we have to do it lets do it with the biggest payer.
        Yuk I can't believe I'm saying this, I feel sick.

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          • July 17, 2014 at 10:25
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            @jim1222:
            Fanx maaate lol

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        • July 17, 2014 at 11:18
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          @terry the turk lion: If it helps fund the prolific goal scorer we crave for they can call it what they like.
          Better " I buy any car.com stadium" in the Championship than The Den in the 1st division.
          As some previously said it will always be the Den to us.
          They gave Newcastles ground some poncey name but the fans refuse to use it and call it by its old name, but the sponsorship money still rolls in.

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          • July 17, 2014 at 17:11
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            @Sealion: hit the nail on the head mate , take the money and buy a striker , could be a top bit of business .

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  • July 17, 2014 at 09:57
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    So we now know the board are not about just making money,i would bet my last pound a few of our past chairmen would have done so.
    This is another reason for some our absent fans{for whatever reason they cannot make it }to at least try and get to the den for,lets say 3 or 4 games a season.
    I am pleased the ground name has not changed ,so for a bit of fun what could they have named it if they had of changed the name i will start it with.
    WELCOME to MARMITE"S GOAL_DEN GATE WAY TO LONDON
    YOU EITHER LOVE US OR HATE US
    BUT THEN, WE DON'T CARE
    C O Y L

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    • July 17, 2014 at 15:42
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      @jim1222: That settles it - I love marmite and I love Millwall! Where do we sign?!
      Good point also, about getting some of our not so regular 'supporters' down the den for a couple more games... What JB has done for this club over the past few years deserves to be recognized and rewarded and an easy way to do this is by GOING TO GAMES!! (I feel a rant coming on...) Gets on my nerves a bit when some bods say 'I 'SUPPORT' this team or that team....' - and never go to games.. Like the Man United style of support.... In my book, 'SUPPORTING' a team is - buying your ticket and making noise to encourage your team to do well... Imagine if some of the 40'000 wembley bunch decided to go to 3-4 games a season.... the transfer window might've been a bit different!!
      Very pleased that the board aren't jumping at the 1st offer they get - as some other clubs have done - to the disgust of the fan base. I'm proud of our club for that - the prostate cancer uk deal being a prime example..

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  • July 17, 2014 at 10:03
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    I think it was brave for the club to turn down such a huge offer!! I personally wouldn't want the ground name to be changed but if it helps keep our club going and generate more money which will help the club improve then I'm all for it.

    What is most important is that us fans will always know the place as the Den!!

    I reckon with where we are located we could put a few more signs up on the back of the Barry Kitchener stand and in between the stands as well as changing our stadium name, means we could get anywhere around the £700k per year and we would be laughing!

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    • July 17, 2014 at 13:35
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      @Bradders:i dont agree with name change & leave the kitch stand..but the back of the east seems the best way to go..plus you toched on something at the end of your post...(700,000)..man utd have a shirt sponser for 3 quarters ofa mil a season..so for a stadium it should be more...you just know alan williams is thinking this

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  • July 17, 2014 at 10:17
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    If were gonna sign players like Ricardo Fuller then why not get sponsored by Age UK or Saga. Maybe they can give us a discount on getting some chair lifts at the den.

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  • July 17, 2014 at 10:31
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    To be honest I don't care if they change the name, if it helps get some money into the club great, think back when the new ground was built did you say to who ever I'm going to the new den today? NO, we all said I'm going down the den or I'm going millwall right or wrong?.

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  • July 17, 2014 at 10:35
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    Could name it after IH, the mental ones retirement home.

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  • July 17, 2014 at 10:47
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    Well done Millwall football club for not making a quick buck!! Sell the naming rights, then they will won't to change the colour of our kit!!!

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  • July 17, 2014 at 11:32
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    Agree its good we didnt sell ourselves , however if larger amounts of money were to be thrown at changing our stadium name from THE DEN & the right sponsor they would go ahead, i for one dont want them to either consider such a sale , its our home , its called THE DEN, its unique to us , they owe it to fans past , present & the future, really & truly this shouldnt be up for discussion, there are other ways of raising money for the club

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    • July 17, 2014 at 13:05
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      @Jingles: am i the only one that as noticed millwall have sold us out before..& sold the proper den to LCC. At least that time we got a brand new stadium..which is worth more then poxy 300,000...

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  • July 17, 2014 at 11:51
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    Well done for turning it down. However don't hold your breaths if a big offer comes along I can't see the board turning it down....

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  • July 17, 2014 at 11:59
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    Big Eyeball Value?
    Is this some kind of Marty Feldman Corporate speak?
    "Welcome to the Den, Home of the Big EyeBall Value"

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  • July 17, 2014 at 12:09
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    The Den sponsored by Snickers
    Get some nuts and support your team

    Who knows might add a few more numbers to the gate

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  • July 17, 2014 at 12:10
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    Credit to the Board here, but to be honest I'm not that hung up the Den or New Den as it was until it wasn't new anymore. Remember they also turned their back on QuidQuid as a shirt sponsor last season. We are the only club around where ethics come first.

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  • July 17, 2014 at 12:51
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    Lion bar is the only one that would be acceptable

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    • July 17, 2014 at 16:34
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      @benzo:
      loving that....THE LION BAR STADIUM... I could live with that for £1m a year

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  • July 17, 2014 at 12:57
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    Simple one den OUR DEN!!!

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  • July 17, 2014 at 12:58
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    Simple one den OUR DEN!

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  • July 17, 2014 at 13:06
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    S***, it's a big issue. Some clubs would prostitute themselves for far less so it's interesting.
    Sort of think the decision makers must be confident they holding the right playing cards, good on them for not jumping straight away but hope they can find the right fit for the right bucks.

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    • July 17, 2014 at 13:45
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      @grassgrower: to right.we hold all the aces..these companies should be begging us we dont need em

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  • July 17, 2014 at 13:51
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    to be honest don't mind if the ground name is changed for the right money sponsor every body knows we need as much revenue as we can get to carry on being competitive at this level we all call the ground what we want but it what goes on on a Saturday or a s*** Tuesday night that matters the most.

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  • July 17, 2014 at 14:19
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    It's should allways be the den we have no songs to sing if they do change it lol no more let all come down to the den

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  • July 17, 2014 at 14:22
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    Having your stadium named after a company is not so bad if it's a spanking new ground. For example, The Emirates or Brighton's Amex Stadium. But with our luck the ground will probably become known as The Den sponsored by Durex. I won't be singing along to our pre-match song if that happens!

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    • July 17, 2014 at 15:19
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      @Canterbury pilgrim: I f we can get a durex big enough to cover our goal we will kill two birds with one stone.
      We will have a sponser and the best stopper in the championship,but then no one will COME to the den.

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  • July 17, 2014 at 14:33
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    The jack Daniels den or the den sponsored by jack Daniels sounds ok
    We've had our jellied eels and our our glass of whiskey

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  • July 17, 2014 at 16:12
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    It's The Lion's Den and nothing else will do ---- For me

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  • July 17, 2014 at 17:55
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    Reading this thread I'm genuinely surprised that a lot of you are kinda on board with this idea. I go past The Den each day on a Southeastern train. I can see that corner that is earmarked, but it's a bit too far for those customers to see. Marketing need to look at the route the Southern trains (I think) take before reaching London Bridge then reverse engineer the idea, approaching potential advertisers outside the London area perhaps? Just a thought....

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  • July 17, 2014 at 17:56
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    Reading this thread I'm genuinely surprised that a lot of you are kinda on board with this idea. I go past The Den each day on a Southeastern train. I can see that corner that is earmarked, but it's a bit too far for those customers to see. Marketing need to look at the route the Southern trains (I think) take before reaching London Bridge then reverse engineer the idea, approaching potential advertisers outside the London area perhaps?! Just a thought....

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  • July 17, 2014 at 18:54
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    Show me the money

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  • July 17, 2014 at 21:19
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    I heard one of the offers was for, 'The Den sponsored by Tampax'
    Bloody ridiculous if you ask me 😀

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    • July 17, 2014 at 21:58
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      @WestKentLion: Yeah. The club turned down the offer. They said there were too many strings attached.

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    • July 17, 2014 at 22:09
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      @WestKentLion: The Tampax offer was only for a brief period!!!

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      • July 17, 2014 at 22:42
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        @Den man: I am told it's only a monthly contract.

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  • July 17, 2014 at 22:48
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    WELL DONE CHAPS , THE NAME THE DEN IS AN INTEGRAL PART OF THE CLUB.

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  • July 18, 2014 at 08:30
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    I like the idea of the energy drink 'THE MONSTERS DEN' lol

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  • July 19, 2014 at 13:10
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    Don't be deluded and taken in by 'this it isn't about the money' approach . . if someone weighs in with enough wedge the club will change the name of the ground to anything . .f*** what the fans think, make no mistake....the official line will change to 'it was an offer we couldn't afford to refuse' overnight

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