Liverpool Sign Standard Chartered to £80M Deal; Replaces Carlsberg

Last Updated Sep 12, 2009 12:30 PM EDT

Liverpool F.C. has replaced lead sponsor Carlsberg with Standard Chartered in an £80 million deal worth £20 million annually for four years, according to the Times. If confirmed on Sept. 18, the deal would move Liverpool to the joint No.1 position, with Manchester United and Aon, in terms of football advertising contracts. Both teams have similar deals set for similar periods, starting in 2010.

The Times underlined Liverpool's historic inability to leverage its brand into the big leagues of Man Utd, F.C. Barcelona, et al:

Liverpool have long been criticised by their supporters for punching below their weight when it comes to commercial opportunities but the sponsorship deal struck by [commercial director Ian Ayre] is an indication that the club are beginning to make the most of their glittering history and worldwide fan base.
For Liverpool, the deal gives the team some options: It could make servicing the terms of its debt easier and provide extra funds for the player budget. Manager Rafael Benitez made only minor player trades over the summer break; some have speculated that his budget was tight. And the deal increases the likelihood of the club getting financing for a new stadium, which has been improved in only a piecemeal fashion since it was first built in 1884. Its capacity is about 45,000, small for a premier league team.

And finally: The team could see a run on fan purchases of the existing Carlsberg shirt. The brewer has sponsored the team since 1992 and its logo is almost part of the official strip. Some fans will want a "classic" shirt before it is replaced by the new, unfamiliar brand.

The top global football sponsorship deals:

  1. Liverpool: £20 million a year (£80 million over four years) with Standard Chartered
  2. Manchester United: £20 million a year (£80 million over four years) with Aon
  3. Bayern Munich: £17 million a year (£68 million over four years) with T-Home
  4. Juventus: £15 million a year (£75 million over five years) with Tamoil
  5. Real Madrid: £12.7 million a year (£38 million over three years) with
  6. Chelsea: £11 million+ a year (£55 million over five years) with Samsung
  7. Manchester City: £8m a year (24 million over three years) with Etihad Airways.
  8. Arsenal: £6.7 million a year (£100 million over 15 years) with Emirates
BNET's previous coverage of football advertising: