EPL Club Man City Begins U.S. Tour With New $109M Nike Kit Deal
Nike will pay EPL club Manchester City $18.2M (all figures U.S.) annually "for the next six years and the club will wear the new kit in both games" against EPL club Chelsea this week during exhibitions in St. Louis and N.Y. as "part of the two-game brand-building trans-Atlantic trip," according to Mark Ogden of the London TELEGRAPH. Man City's commercial earnings "will be boosted by the unveiling of the new Nike kit" after the company renegotiated City's previous deal with Umbro -- now owned by Nike. Although the size of the deal "falls short" of the deals signed by fellow EPL clubs Liverpool (Warrior) and Arsenal (Puma) over the past 12 months, Man City has "doubled" its kit income following the deal with Nike. Club officials believe that "being part of the Nike empire will enable City to grow its presence globally alongside the companies more established brands" such as EPL club Manchester United, La Liga club FC Barcelona and the Brazilian national team (London TELEGRAPH, 5/21). The deal coincides with the announcement of NYC FC, the MLS expansion team owned by Man City and the Yankees.
FLIGHT PATTERN: In London, Nick Harris reports Man City is "seeking to replace Etihad Airways as their shirt sponsor but the search is being hampered by the chaos surrounding" former manager Roberto Mancini's "sacking and uncertainty over the club's future." Sources said that Man City's "hierarchy decided months ago to find a major sponsor to replace Etihad on City’s shirts, although Etihad will remain a major club sponsor," with naming rights to the club's home stadium (London DAILY MAIL, 5/19).