Manchester United On Verge of Sponsorship Deal with Snacks Maker

August 22, 2011

World Soccer Giants, Manchester United, are on the verge of signing a sponsorship deal with Malaysian snacks maker Mamee Double Decker Bhd. next month, sources close to the matter have said.

The main components of the deal are with Mister Potato, a brand of potato crisps and chips made by the Kuala Lumpur-listed company, with the official announcement in the middle of September. The brand’s market share in Malaysia for potato products was as much as 48 percent last year, according to the company’s website.

The plan comes as the record 19-time English Premier League champions plan an initial public offering in Singapore to raise $1 billion later this year, three people familiar with the IPO plans said last week. A stake of up to 30 percent may be sold, said one of the people. The club wants to cut financing costs and raise money that could be used for players. It spends about 45 million pounds ($74 million) a year to service a 500 million-pound bond.

The club, which Forbes magazine estimates is now worth $1.8 billion and Deloitte LLP says is the richest in revenue behind Real Madrid and Barcelona in a list published in February 2011, has about 190 million of its 330 million fans in Asia.

Manchester United declined to comment on the deal, as did Paul Anand, an outside spokesman for Mamee Double Decker.

Manchester United said in a statement this month: “The multitude of local events we run with global and local partners, and a prospective forthcoming tour of Asia in 2012, necessitate expanding our footprint both with people and office space,” Manchester United said in a statement earlier this month. “This is consistent with the huge appeal of Manchester United in the region, borne out of nearly 40 years of visiting.”