We don’t know what team will be playing in Columbia, S.C., in 2016, but we do know the name of the new ballpark as a naming-rights deal was announced: Spirit Communications Park.
“We’re thrilled to partner with a cutting edge company like Spirit Communications,” said Jason Freier, CEO, Hardball Capital, who will own the new team and invest in ballpark construction. “Spirit is a great local company with a tremendous backstory. Spirit is a leader in innovation, collaboration, and customer service and has been a great community partner. Our goal is for this park and professional baseball in Columbia to be recognized the same way.”
Spirit Communications is based in Columbia, with its headquarters on Bull Street, just blocks from the Columbia Common development. Spirit was born and raised in Columbia and is one of the 25 largest privately held firms in the state of South Carolina. Spirit was formed in 1984 by the eleven independent telephone companies and cooperatives across the state. Spirit offers innovative business solutions to a cross section of businesses, government agencies, schools and healthcare organizations throughout the Carolinas. Spirit provides high tech solutions for voice, data, Internet, managed and hosted IT Cloud services that meet the demands of business today and into the future.
“Spirit Communications is delighted to make this investment in what we are sure will be one of the most important and transformative projects our home town of Columbia has seen,” said Bob Keane, President and Chief Executive Officer, Spirit Communications. “Spirit and our owner companies have been a part of many big things here in South Carolina — assuring that modern technology is available to grow businesses throughout our state as well as bringing that technology to underserved rural areas and schools. Supporting Columbia Common and our new hometown team is a natural fit.”
“Spirit Communications is a successful, home-grown Columbia business that, along with its member companies, has done so much for South Carolina,” said Mayor Steve Benjamin. “They are helping position Columbia as a true center of global innovation and I can’t think of a better partner for our new community venue.”
Sitework for Spirit Communications Park is scheduled to begin in late December and a ceremonial groundbreaking will occur in early January. Populous is designing the ballpark. The construction of Spirit Communications Park will be managed by CCEB Partners, a joint venture between local firms Contract Construction, Construction Dynamics and EnviroAg Sciences and Barton Malow Construction.
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