November 04, 2008

Manchester United optimistic about future sponsorship

David Gill, chief executive of English Manchester United, is assured that the club will be able to land a sponsorship contract in 2010 that will measure up to the shirt deal with AIG, worth GBP 14 million per year. "There are still some very successful, profitable, growing companies around the world," Gill told PA.

Manchester United has already acquired four profitable sponsorships in less than a year, the most recent being Hublot, Swiss watchmaker.

The four-year contract with AIG has reached its third year, and is continuing despite the financial institution's need of a rescue from the United States Government as a result of the credit crisis. Renewal of the deal is unlikely, which means United will be seeking new shirt sponsors in 2010.

AIG will be settling the outstanding funds owed to the club beyond the expiration date of the contract, Gill explains.

Manchester United owe GBP 666 million, which means that should the club under-perform or lose a sponsor, they could enter a financial hardship. According to Gill, the addition of new players, such as Dimitar Berbatov, ensure that the situation won't come to that.

The club believes that football is still an attractive investment opportunity.

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