Spanish soccer giant and UEFA Champions League winner Barcelona’s vice-president of finance, Javier Faus, has admitted that the English Premier League’s top clubs are ahead of the Catalan club in efforts to tap into the potentially lucrative Indian market.
Barcelona confirmed yesterday, June 7, that its leading officials will travel to India in September on a fact-finding mission in an attempt to build on other commercial links in Asia. The news comes as a continuation of the sides development in emerging markets after kicking off ‘Project China’, in partnership with main partner Nike, while the club sold its shirt sponsorship for the first time in its history to the Qatar Foundation late last year.
Faus told The Times of India: “The Spanish clubs are behind the English clubs when it comes to exposure in India and Asia. The reason is that in the last 20 years we have concentrated on Europe, Latin America and the US…But it’s changing now…We are now analysing our strategic plan on how to tackle the Indian market and the president of the club and I will probably travel to India in September. We plan to spend a week there understanding the market dynamics and setting up a strategy for our club in India for the next five years.
“You have to remember the English prominence in India for over 100 years. That’s exactly the same thing that happened with us in Latin America. That’s why we are so strong in Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Colombia and Venezuela, where the first team is Barcelona.”
He continued: “We understand that the Indian market is so important and we are trying to enter into the market even though we don’t have the special touch that the English clubs have. Taking into consideration the way Barca plays, and the stars we have, it is an advantage to enter the market, and we’ll definitely want to tap that potential.”