According to the Daily Mail and the Mirror, Arsenal have begun the search for a new shirt sponsor with Emirates unlikely to extend their current deal when it ends at the end of the 2018/19 season.
The Gunners signed a £150 million five-year deal with the Dubai-based airline in 2012, an extension of a contract that started in 2006 that also included stadium naming rights. The airline remains committed to sponsoring Arsenal’s 60,000 capacity home until 2028.
While other clubs have separated their training and matchday kit sponsorship, Arsenal’s relationship with Emirates sees them emblazon their logo on both. Such are the terms of the current deal, Arsenal are unable to negotiate sleeve sponsorship tenancy agreements that will be allowed next season.
So why are Arsenal looking for a new sponsor two years before the current deal ends?
It is suggested that Emirates have become ‘disillusioned with football’ and are also reconsidering their £10 million a year sponsorship of the FA Cup. Who knew that sponsoring the team that has won the cup with your name on it so often could be so disappointing?
For the record, Emirates also sponsor Real Madrid, PSG, Benfica, AC Milan, Olympiakos and Hamburg.
In reality, any marketing team worth their salt should probably be chasing the sponsorship dollar 24/7 so if we’re looking two years ahead, that shouldn’t be surprising. Perhaps we can bring back JVC, they still exist right?
Our current kit deal with Puma, worth £150 million over five years, will also end at the conclusion of the 2018/19 season. Presumably, we’ll be keeping an eye out for potential suitors on that front as well.
While Arsenal’s shirt sponsor and kit producer deals were market-leading at the time of signing other clubs have since taken advantage of a huge influx of cash from multinational companies and we’re now way down the pecking order.