Shockwaves hit the Redskins on Thursday as FedEx formally asked the organization to change the team name.
FedEx has asked the Redskins to change their name. This is a massive move. FedEx has major sponsorships with the Redskins including naming rights to the stadium— JP Finlay (@JPFinlayNBCS) July 2, 2020
“We have communicated to the team in Washington our request that they change the team name.“
FedEx holds the naming rights to the Redskins home stadium, a deal that one league source says pays Washington around $8 million per year and runs through 2025. If that isn't enough, FedEx President and CEO Frederick Smith owns a minority stake in the Redskins.
Why is FedEx asking the Redskins to change their name such a huge deal? FedEx CEO Fred Smith is also a minority owner in the Redskins. pic.twitter.com/pDDRbPmxYC— JP Finlay (@JPFinlayNBCS) July 2, 2020
Earlier this week AdWeek reported that a number of major investment firms planned on putting corporate pressure on the Redskins to change the name by telling major corporations like Nike, Pepsi and FedEx they would pull capital from their financial positions. Whether or not that threat moved FedEx to ask the Redskins to change the name is unknown, but it seems like one wild coincidence.
For years Redskins owner Dan Snyder has remained steadfast that he would not change the name despite mounting outside pressure. A 2016 Washington Post survey revealed that 90 percent of Native Americans are not offended by the name and for a few years the controversy surrounding the moniker disappeared.
Since the murder of George Floyd in Minnesota in May and significant protests around the world, questions about the team name have been brought into the spotlight. And now that light is shining brighter than ever.
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