Liverpool Confirms Search for New Stadium Naming Rights Partner
March 31, 2011
In his first television interview since his promotion to CEO, Ian Ayre has revealed that English Premier League soccer club Liverpool are actively seeking a naming partner for a new stadium, were they to relocate from Anfield.
The new owners the Fenway Sports Group, previously known as New England Sports Ventures, have stated a desire to increase capacity at home games and Ayre confirmed: “”We are actively seeking a naming partner if we move to a new stadium.” However he did add that the club were “definitely not consider renaming Anfield.”
In other news, the new CEO of Liverpool, has warned that UEFA’s financial fair play rules will be stifled if they are not applied “hard and fast”.
Ayre, formally the club’s commercial director, was speaking on the first day of the Soccerex European Forum in Manchester, and said that the new regulations, which should preclude a club from spending significantly more than it earned, have to be applied equally across the board.
Fears that a rich benefactor could simply write a cheque to cover the difference between income and expenditure, disguising it in the accounts, were allayed by UEFA’s head of club licensing Andrea Traverso, who claimed that a rigorous system of checks would be applied to prevent a rich benefactor inventing a ‘ghost’ sponsorship deal as a way of pouring money into a club.
Traverso stated: “We will refer any deal with related third parties which appear to be above the market rate to a commission.”
However, Ayre remained sceptical about the ability of outsiders to decide what is market value or not, adding: “This is a concern for us. Who can say what the market price is? After all, we renewed our sponsorship deal for a 200% increase. Would that have been acceptable?”