Thursday 14 December 2017

Barclays could end premier sponsorship

Barclays are reported to be considering whether to maintain its sponsorship of the Premier League, even though the current three-year naming rights deal has run for only six months so far.

The current agreement began at the start of this season and is due to run until the end of 2015-16. Barclays paid £120m for it – £40m per year – but a bank source was quoted yesterday as saying it had "zero value" in the UK and they were considering ending their sponsorship.

Given the rivalry between Sky Sports and BT Sport for the broadcasting rights – and expanding international rights deals – the next Premier League sponsorship deal is likely to be far more expensive.

But negotiations for the next deal, running for three years from the 2016-17 season to the end of 2018-19, are not likely to begin until early next year.

The current £120m three-year deal was almost 50pc up on the £82m it paid during 2010-13 and the company fears a further price inflation as a result of the battle for television rights between BSkyB and BT.

The Barclays group replaced Carling as the Premier League's title sponsors in 2001 – initially to plug Barclaycard – as part of the division's globalisation drive.

A sponsorship consultant claimed last night that the Premier League may have to "work hard" to convince any potential bidders to meet their asking price.

However, he added: "I still don't think they'll struggle to sell it because of the scale, and somebody coming in will bring a real freshness to the whole thing."

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