Africa Calling – Arsenal seal deal with Airtel

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Arsenal have added to their portfolio of regional partners by striking a deal with African mobile network operator Airtel.

The agreement, which affords the company the rights to use Gunners merchandising, hospitality and content in Nigeria, Zambia, Ghana, Uganda and Rwanda, is the second to be done in recent weeks with Malta Guinness also penning a lucrative sponsorship deal.

With a friendly match against Nigeria set to be played at the Abuja National Stadium in early August, it’s obvious that Ivan Gazidis is leading an aggressive marketing push on the continent as the Gunners look to take advantage of their popularity in the region.

Speaking about the latest deal, Arsenal’s head of global partnerships Vinai Venkatesham said:

“This is the second long-term partnership arrangement to arise from the continent and we look forward to developing a number of exciting initiatives with Airtel, starting with our forthcoming tour to Nigeria in August. “This underlines the depth of our following in Africa and how the profile of the club continues to grow internationally.”

As part of the contract Arsenal will also support the Airtel Rising Stars football programme and provide UEFA-trained coaches to help the initiative.

In addition to the two regional partnerships, the Gunners also have eight official partners including betsson, Carlsberg, Lucozade, O2, Citroen, Thomas Cook Sport, EA Sports and Indesit and two lead partners in Nike and Emirates.

It is expected that this portfolio will continue to grow as chief commercial officer Tom Fox spearheads further global initiatives with a view to spreading awareness of the Arsenal brand.

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RobSchneiderDerp
RobSchneiderDerp

Africa Calling. That is about ten times better a pun than anything I read in real journalism. Cheers

TeeCee
TeeCee

And about 100 times better than you’ll see in “Let’s make up shit about RvP leaving” journalism……

Jose Ozorio

The Commercial team brought in by Gazidis is finally bearing some fruit. We really need to get the commercial side on par with Chel$ki. Our influence and presence in Asia and Africa needs more work!

Pascal Cygan's anal beads

I’m certain in Africa Arsenal is the most popular club team. In fact I have never met an African in London who doesn’t support Arsenal…

goooooonaaaarr
goooooonaaaarr

Times have changed and African/Nigerians in London don’t reflect what really goes on here.

Chelsea’s spending and recent success, coupled with Man U’s dominance have cause a massive drop in Arsenal supporters here in Nigeria. Although like most football fans, many are fair weather fans who choose to support ‘the winning team’ and I’m happy they are gone. I think it’s the same around the world though…

gooner
gooner

Ok. I am now switching to Airtel

Ref
Ref

Good, you own a phone.

big dawg
big dawg

That’s the kind of shite joke we’ve all come to expect from the likes of John Terry.

Ref
Ref

Not my day I guess. Off to legrove.

Ref
Ref

42 million fans!! great. I got 2 kids coming up so make that 42000002. (I think.)
let’s fill the world.

Devil
Devil

Its great to hear. Some more cash coming in. And its great to hear that an Indian company is in partnership with Arsenal. Hopefully they’ll partner in India as well.

clash
clash

Airtel is an Indian telecommunication company. In South Asia, Airtel has tie-up with Man united and has recently started airing a commercial which advertises – a football selection trials which will take kids to Man united for training.

I think Arsenal has more following in Africa than in Asia, so Airtel has tied up with them for African region.

KenyanGooner
KenyanGooner

Well not really the whole African region….airtel-Kenya has a tie-up with Man-useless with commercial and all.

But Arsenal following is definitely bigger in Africa.

MJB
MJB

When I was in Thailand it was Man U everywhere, deals with Singha, mobile companies etc… Rooney et al on large billboard adverts.
Chelsea wasn’t so prominent but a lot of locals wearing t-shirts.
Hardly anything at all Arsenal related. 🙁

Aman
Aman

Anything about the money wa are getting from these deals?

A
A

Airtel also has a very similar partnership with Manchester United, but for South Asia. The Rising Stars initiative has already been launched there..

feygooner
feygooner

Yeah, the ads for it are horrible.

Devil
Devil

Btw, the worst part is, I went to that site and on its home page I found Nani, Evra and Chicharito. This is just bad. Hope they change it to Arsenal players soon.

gooner
gooner

Or and i forgot to add this. With Arsenal being the most popular club in Africa (outside south africa), it was a good move on the part of the marketing team to exploit the raw market. You’ld be shocked how much the club would reap if they toured countries like Uganda and Kenya.

Unlike Asia and America where clubs like madrid, barca, man u have a bigger following, this is the one place where the Arsenal are undisputed number one. Though man u have quite a few cunts who closely follow

Glory Hunter
Glory Hunter

These commercial deals explains the signing of Podolski & Giroud.
We should go to Nigeria every year! 🙂

Ezigbo onyearse
Ezigbo onyearse

Bye bye mtn,hello Airtel!

Prajesh
Prajesh

AIRTEL is an Indian company which also operates in AFRICA…it sponsors MAN UTD in the INDIAN region.

gooooonerUSA
gooooonerUSA

i would say Arsenal and Chelsea have the largest fanbases in Nigeria, followed by Utd and Barca/Real. Chelsea/Samsung have definitely done well in regards to advertising, Drogba is on many billboards in Lagos

Brian Mendoza

They may wan’t to start taking those down then, no?

Kano gooner

I am glad I use Airtel, therefore dont need to make the switch.

Hudson Hornet

Good news!

All income generated in this manner is essential should we be serious in taking on the oil giants.

When compared to Bayern Munich our income is shoddy. They are a good example to follow. Obviously the fact that they have multiple European cups but this is something for us to remedy.

Urgently.

Ib

But mtn is more effecient

feygooner
feygooner

This is great news 😀

Manu also has a sponsorship with DHL in India (IDK about Singapore, Malaysia etc), I think some thing like that might be next. Although hopefully they will make better ads. Even Manu fans hate the DHL-Manu ads.

TexasGooner6
TexasGooner6

We are not the most popular in North Africa. My Family is Algerian/Tunisian and they are not big supporters or Arsenal. They love Barcelona and more French teams.

TexasGooner6
TexasGooner6

Arsenal don’t seem to be doing much in America other than having games on TV. Not sure why. The owner is American, the President came from an American league and our Marketing Chief is American. No tours, no major advertising campaigns, nothing.

feygooner
feygooner

That’s a pretty good point. Didn’t Manu go to America last year?

Ref
Ref

So?

Arsenalkid700
Arsenalkid700

If you live in the New York area and you have the YES Network than you can watch Arsenal TV during the season. (Mainly during the Yankees Off-season)

Also they sent the youth team to the Dallas Cup in 2011. Not sure about 2012.

Burt Reynolds
Burt Reynolds

You have to win the youth league for that invite. It’s like getting into the old Champion’s League!

MJB
MJB

What is going on behind Ivan in that photo? Looks like some kind of surgical operation on somebody’s arm.

Jasonissimo
Jasonissimo

AFC crest is getting tattooed onto a forearm.

TeeCee
TeeCee

Is that Giroud’s forearm?

lapidarij
lapidarij

I thought Airtel is a player?! New George Finidi 🙂

Kush
Kush

China is the biggest market to dig into. with a population of 1,338,300,000 you cant go wrong.

JustAnotherGuy
JustAnotherGuy

Seems like Arsenal Commercial target is Asia & Africa. I wouldn’t blame them for not trying in the Americas. Spanish teams(cuntolona, madrid), man utd,chelski seems well rooted there.

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[…] non-football related Arsenal stuff, the club announced a commercial tie-up with mobile phone company Airtel. They’re an Indian company and this deal focuses on their African market, so it’s a […]

Jeff
Jeff

Good move by the Arse. Whereas there are so many fairweather EPL fans in Africa, the committed support base for the Arsenal is simply unrivalled.

Lord Teddy Ears
Lord Teddy Ears

I am sure with all this extra money ticket prices will be frozen and a dearth off class A players will be on their collective ways into the Arsenal team 🙂

Only joking lets hope it brings some good to the region as well as helping arsenal

Shavid
Shavid

Glad to see Arsenal aren’t ‘resting on their laurels’ waiting for the big contracts to be re-negotiated in 2014.
Asia is definately going to be the growth area. Arsenal are popular in Asia as are Man U (deal with AirAsia means they’re everywhere) Chelsea aswell.

Not Spurs though. They’re basically nowhere.

Lord Teddy Ears
Lord Teddy Ears

In fact Spurs are so nowhere when the riots where on they didn’t even loot no hope lane but they did loot JJB Sports go figure that 1 out.

MJB
MJB

Jeez, who would want to be Lord Sugars ‘apprentice’ when the have almost zero global presence?

Up the Arsenal for a Chinese take-away!!!! 😉

Naija Gunner
Naija Gunner

Glad to hear these, the good news aren’t gonna stop forever for Arsenal amen.

I have an airtel line that I only use once in while but now knowing about this deal, it’s gonna be my default line and I know am contributing something to Arsenal FC’s pocket ☺☺☺.

Whisht
Whisht

It’s like a new signing!

Oh, hold on…

Sydney Gooner
Sydney Gooner

Does anyone know how much we’ll make from this deal?

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