ST. LOUIS — When the gates finally open for St. Louis City SC's inaugural season downtown in 2023, fans won't be walking into "Centene Stadium".
The club announced on Tuesday that the Centene Corporation would no longer be the stadium naming-rights sponsor and that the stadium would be called CityPark going forward.
“After discussions with Centene, we have agreed to reshape the current partnership with them and the focus moving forward will be on developing community health and wellness programming throughout the region,” St. Louis CITY SC’s President and Chief Executive Officer Carolyn Kindle said.
The team is slated to join Major League Soccer for the 2023 season.
Centene also responded to the "reshaping" of the partnership.
"Centene’s mission is to transform the health of the communities we serve, and we are actively re-aligning Centene’s community sponsorships and charitable giving to better support this important mission," A Centene spokesperson said via email. "Centene’s decision to reshape our partnership with St. Louis CITY SC reflects our emphasis on improving public health and individual well-being in everything we do. Moving forward, Centene’s partnerships – in St. Louis and across the country – will focus on programming that creates long-term, tangible value for local communities and helps families to live healthier lives. Centene and St. Louis CITY SC share a common goal of supporting the health and wellness of the St. Louis community that we are proud to call home."
City SC said it will still work together with Centene when it comes to community health and wellness initiatives including City SC's Futures Program focused on bringing soccer to a diverse group of youth in the St. Louis area.
City SC also said in a release that interest in partnerships with the club is still strong.
“We continue to be impressed with the overwhelming support from both our fans and the business community. In addition to the incredible sponsors we have already announced, we continue to have conversations with a number of organizations who share our vision to further St. Louis’ growth,” St. Louis City SC Chief Revenue Officer Dennis Moore said in release. “We now look forward to being able to include stadium naming rights in those conversations.”