April 29, 2020
Tottenham Hotspur’s new £1 billion, 62,000 seater stadium is looking for a name. If you like the idea of your company’s name emblazoned across this remarkable, state of the art sporting venue it will cost you around £250 million spread over 10 years.
Eye-watering you may think, but there is no shortage of interest. The top contenders are Nike, who is already the shirt sponsors at the football club and Amazon. With Amazon estimated to have a net worth (as of April 2020) at around $1 trillion, there is no doubt that this is an affordable prospect for them. If the sums reported of the deal desired by Tottenham are correct, it would be one of the most lucrative stadium agreements in history ... let alone in the English Premier League.
Etihad’s partnership with Manchester City is worth around £40million per season, but that includes the stadium naming rights AND the shirt sponsorship. Arsenal has the same deal with Emirates for both shirt and stadium sponsorship. There is no doubt that stadium renaming can be a sensitive subject for passionate supporters where the clubs are part of their lives, (who doesn’t have fond memories of Manchester City playing at Maine Road or Arsenal at Highbury?). Still, there is nothing better for a football fan than their team winning. That is, as long as the essence of the club is protected. So it goes that a successful partnership between the right businesses can bring about amazing results.
After Brighton and Hove Albion’s beloved Goldstone Ground was sold they were homeless, literally. They shared grounds, then converted a small athletics stadium until finally, they got permission to build a new ground completed in May 2011. The new 30,750 seater venue was addressed as The Falmer Stadium until in 2010 sponsorship was secured with a U.S company with its U.K base in Brighton itself. They signed the naming rights agreement, and the stadium became known as the American Express Community Stadium. American Express went on to sponsor the club's shirts in 2013 and acquired the naming rights to the club’s elite performance centre a year later.
The combination of the two businesses proved to be a great partnership, with the club climbing into and sustaining a place in the coveted Premier League. They have also recently announced that a new 12-year deal has been signed, which is reportedly in excess of £100 million - making it one of the biggest deals outside of the top six Premier League clubs. A perfect example of successful co-branding without either business losing any of its integrity.
For the record, the opening match at the American Express Community Stadium was Brighton & Hove Albion v’s Tottenham Hotspur with the away side taking the victory 3-2. Could there be a return match? Maybe at the new “Amazon Stadium"?
Watch this space!