Barclays to maintain Premier League ties despite ending title sponsorship

Barclays has signed up as official banking partner of the Premier league after opting not to renew its title sponsorship of the competition.

The new Premier League logo for next season
The new Premier League logo for next season

The Premier League has decided to pursue a strategy of having no title sponsor after Barclays decided against renewing its £40m-a-year sponsorship last year.

Its strategy follows in the footsteps of major US sporting leagues such as the NBA and NFL that have no title sponsor and instead focus on signing up ‘category’ sponsors.

Barclays is the third category sponsor the Premier League has signed up after Nike became the official ball sponsor and EA Sports signed up as ‘sports technology’ partner.

The financial terms of the sponsorship have not been revealed. It is understood Barclays decided against renewing its title sponsorship after fearing the cost would escalate after the Premier League landed a significantly larger deal for broadcast coverage for next season.

The Barclays banking group has sponsored the league since 2001, when it first used the sponsorship to promote its Barclaycard brand.

Premier League managing director Richard Masters said: "Barclays has been a fantastic title sponsor of the competition and this new partnership is a sign of the value they continue to see in being associated with the Premier League.

"The exciting football we are witnessing this season is providing an excellent platform for the League to take forward its new sponsorship strategy and we are working on a number of other category partnerships which will complement this new agreement with Barclays."

The current Premier League season has been mooted as one of the most exciting ever as the teams that traditionally dominate the title race have been usurped by Leicester City and Tottenham.

Barclays global head of sponsorships Nathan Homer said: "The partnership will continue to offer us many assets such as tickets that are valued by our customers and clients, as well as helping maintain our long established commercial relationships with the Premier League and many clubs."

Barclays and the Premier League are also working on an ad campaign for the end of the season to celebrate Barclays' 15 years of title sponsorship of the League.

Further details are due to be revealed in April.

In February the Premier League launched a more colourful brand identity built around its lion icon ahead of next season, which will be the first time it has been without a title sponsor in 23 years.

The Premier League had no sponsor in its first year and its only sponsor before Barclays was beer brand Carling. 

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