Austin FC announced their first founding corporate partner on Wednesday, and in the process shed a bit of light on the expansion club’s preparations for their 2021 arrival in MLS.
Austin have inked a multi-year agreement with St. David’s HealthCare, one of the largest health systems in Texas and the third-largest private employer in the Austin area, that makes the hospital network “the official healthcare partner, training partner and performance center naming rights partner” of the expansion side.
As the club’s press materials revealed, this means Austin FC’s future training facility will be dubbed the St. David’s Performance Center, a complex at a yet-to-be-named location which will serve as home to both the first team and academy sides. Austin’s academy is set to officially launch this fall, when they will begin fielding teams in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy for the 2019-20 season.
The facility will open in advance of their inaugural season, which will kick off in March of 2021 at their privately-financed stadium, a 20,500-capacity, soccer-specific venue in the McKalla Place neighborhood. Austin aim to break ground on stadium construction this fall.
The St. David’s HealthCare brand will also feature on Austin FC’s training jerseys, as well as a section of the new stadium, and the company will provide health and wellness services for players and staff as well as healthcare services for fans attending home matches and other club events.