Why are sponsors deserting Arsenal?

In December 2018, Britain’s biggest gambling companies voluntarily agreed to a “whistle-to-whistle” television advertising ban.

The Remote Gambling Association (RGA) struck a deal to stop adverts during live sports broadcasts from the 2019/20 season.

Whilst this agreement did not include shirt and league sponsorship and digital advertising around a pitch, it seems like many of the smaller gambling firms have decided to reduce what they spend on team sponsorship.

This would explain why the 6 betting companies to sponsor Arsenal are no longer renewing their deal.

Also no longer an Arsenal sponsor mining into the 2019/20 season is Chinese carmaker BYD.

The deal with BYD was always a questionable one.

A couple of days after Arsenal announced the agreement, it transpired that the person doing the deal on before of BYD has was neither an employee, nor been given authorisation to conduct business in its name.

It was then confusing when BYD appeared on the substitutes bench seats throughout the season, seemingly indicating that Arsenal had agreed a deal.

The feeling is that after the fraudulent deal was exposed, both Arsenal and BYD agreed a one year contract, likely at a lot lower than what the fake deal was signed for. This would have benefited both sides.

BYD would get exposure to the British market at a low price and without having to do much work. It was too late for Arsenal to start negotiations with partner before the start of the season and, having already paid for those seats and other advertising materials, it was better to agree a deal for less money than have no money at all – and actually make a loss.

The 1-year agreement over and Arsenal will announce a new official car partner shortly.

The Gatorade deal was never a really “pay for advertising” type sponsorship deal. It was more of a partnership.

Gatorade were announced as Arsenal’s Sports Drink and Sports Nutrition partner in 2013 in a joint announcement alongside Liverpool. Liverpool also no longer count the drinks brand a sponsor or partner.

The deal saw Arsenal’s first team, under-21 and under-18 teams use Gatorade’s elite portfolio of sports fuel products and equipment  during training sessions and on match days. In return of free, unlimited products, Gatorade had a presence on LED boards and branding within the Emirates stadium.

Gatorade have a track record of becoming sponsors / partners of sports teams and instead of paying for the privileged, offering free product.

A team like Arsenal will not struggle to find another “sports drink and sports nutrition partner”.

Star Lager are the 8th brand to have ended their association with Arsenal.

The Nigerian beer company became Arsenal’s official beer partner in Nigeria back in 2016, signing a reported 5-year deal. It is not clear why this deal has ended 2 years early.

Star Lager also announced a similar partnership with Manchester City back in 2016. A quick look at Manchester City’s partners indicates that their agreement with the Premier League champions has also ended.

As always, you can either read the headline that makes you think that companies are running away from Arsenal, or you can take the time to look into who has left, and why.

There is not anything sinister going on, and Arsenal have recently agreed a big money deal with Adidas to become a key partner. The deal with the German kit manufacture is reported to be the 3rd biggest in history.

With Visit Rwanda and a new Emirates deal set to kick in from this summer, Arsenal will see their commercial income increase by £50million from what was shown in the 2017/18 accounts.


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