Liverpool Aim to Replicate Manchester United in new Qatari Sponsorship Deal

April 29, 2013

Liverpool have been linked with a multi-million pound sponsorship deal with Qatari communications firm Ooredoo, in what could be an attempt to replicate Manchester United’s global commercial dominance.

Reports are suggesting that the deal could see Ooredoo rename the iconic Anfield stadium and become the club’s shirt sponsor, with Standard Chartered having 18 months remaining on their £20m per year deal.

Bitter rivals Manchester United have had huge success in finding global partners and sponsorship expert Nigel Currie believes Livepool’s new deal is a sign of the pressure on opposing Premier League clubs.

Currie, director at brandRapport told iSportconnect: “There is growing pressure among a few of the top English clubs to replicate Manchester United’s global commercial success.  United now have almost 40 major sponsors which has been achieved through targeting different territories and being extremely efficient with the equity it has.

“They have shown just how undervalued certain club sponsorship and marketing rights have been over recent years.

“Liverpool will also be looking to establish a new global marketing model and develop similar types of partnerships around the world.”

Ooredoo have recently appointed Lionel Messi as an ambassador and claim that they have received a tender from Liverpool.

A spokesman for Ooredoo said on Al Jeezera’s website: “The goal was to sponsor a big English club with a huge history. Our search included Arsenal and Manchester United but the former two have long sponsorship deals and the same applies to Manchester City so Liverpool is the only club available right now.

“We want to sponsor the club in full. We want to sponsor the stadium (possibly rename it) as well as the club’s kits. Our goal is to reach the Asian markets where the Premier League has an enormous fan base.

“We received the tender from the club a few days ago and we are currently in the process of due diligence and we are studying each aspect of the study. It is a dual interest, Liverpool needs the money to compete with the European heavyweights and we want to expand our brand to reach new markets via football.”

Liverpool have been in the news for the wrong reasons lately, with Luis Suarez facing a ten match ban for biting Branislav Ivanovic.

However, Currie added that this new deal shows that the Suarez incident will not affect the club’s future sponsorship deals and said that the possible renaming of the stadium will be the element to look out for.

“The Suarez incident will not impact on their sponsorship programme and will quickly be forgotten,” said Currie.

“The naming rights to the stadium will be interesting and will undoubtedly cause a big reaction among the fans.

“The loyalty shown to old club stadiums is very powerful.  The Arsenal/Emirates agreement has been hugely successful primarily because the Emirates Stadium was a new build.

“It will be interesting to see the reaction to the first of the big clubs to introduce a naming rights sponsor to their existing stadium.”

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