Emirates and Arsenal Football Club on Friday announced a new $240 million deal which grants the airline a 5- year extension to its shirt partnership with the club until the end of the 2018/2019 season.
The agreement, which is worth $48 million a year for five years, was said to be one of the biggest deals ever struck in the game and the strongest and most recognizable partnerships in sport.
"Arsenal’s strong appeals around the globe and its ambitious approach to the game parallel our own approach to business, making them a valuable partner for our brand," said HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline and Group.
"We continue to see immeasurable value in our global sports sponsorships and our sponsorship with Arsenal is no different. The Club has been an important enabler of the growth of our business over the last decade and we are confident this will continue as part of our extended deal.”
“This partnership remained a perfect combination of two truly global brands. Through our global network and carefully selected sports sponsorships, Emirates is able to unite and engage fans and, coupled with Arsenal’s world-wide fan following, this makes for a strong match,” Sheikh Ahmed added.
Arsenal’s home will continue to be known as Emirates Stadium up to 2028 under the deal which also stipulates that the Emirates brand will also continue appearing on the front of Arsenal’s playing and training kits.
The new agreement also contains a number of marketing rights, which come into effect immediately, to ensure Emirates can engage with Arsenal fans in the UK and abroad.
"This is an exciting day for Arsenal Football Club and all our supporters," said Arsenal Chief Executive Ivan Gazidis during the signing ceremony. "This agreement is a testimony to Arsenal’s approach and to the capabilities we have developed in recent years as well as the strength of our partnership with Emirates.
“The original deal with Emirates was a key facilitator of our move from Highbury and this next phase of our relationship will be just as critical to keep us at the top of the game in England and Europe.”
The new agreement was formally concluded on Friday at Emirates Stadium by Gazidis and Emirates Divisional Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications, Boutros Boutros.
Under the agreement, the Arsenal soccer school in Dubai, which launched in 2010, will also continue its mission. Since its inauguration, the school has offered training to more than 4000 youngsters and has been visited by Arsenal’s first team players.
Emirates first signed its sponsorship agreement with Arsenal in 2004, providing the airline with naming rights to the stadium until 2021 and a shirt sponsorship that began in the 2006/2007 season.
“Emirates is the perfect partner for Arsenal and we are delighted to have agreed a new partnership. Emirates is a world class brand and by flying to over 120 destinations across six continents has a truly global reach. This reach will play an important role in our own ambitions to further extend the depth of our following around the world. ” Gazidis.