French football club Olympique Lyonnais has signed global airline Emirates as its new shirt sponsor.
The deal, which has a five-year duration, will come into effect from the start of the 2020-21 football season as Emirates replaces automotive manufacturer Hyundai on the front of the Ligue 1 side’s shirt.
The agreement is worth between €20m ($22m) and €25m per season, according to Les Echos.
The deal, which was brokered by the Infront agency, will grant the company’s ‘Fly Better’ logo a presence on the front of Lyon’s playing and training kits.
In addition, Emirates will receive extensive visibility at the club’s Groupama stadium and other marketing rights including hospitality and ticketing.
Hyundai is expected to maintain an association with the Ligue 1 outfit by becoming the sleeve sponsor from 2020-21 onwards, reports L’Equipe.
Emirates is the former shirt sponsor of Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain. The Paris club recently added Qatar Airways as a premium sponsor, replacing Emirates as the club’s official airline in a deal which will run until the end of the 2021-2022 season.
The attraction of Lyon as a travel destination was a key factor in the agreement. When Emirates began running direct flights to the French city in 2012, it became the first airline to connect Lyon to the United Arab Emirates, and more broadly the Middle East, Eastern Africa and the South Asian subcontinent via Dubai
Emirates group chairman and chief executive, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said: “This partnership is more than just a commercial deal, but also reinforces Emirates’ investment and economic contribution to both the Lyon region, and France as a whole, a country where we have been present for nearly three decades.’’
The airline has a broad sponsorship presence across football. Its logo is visible across several high-profile clubs, including Spanish giants Real Madrid, English Premier League side Arsenal and Italy’s AC Milan. It also holds contracts across several other sports, including golf, tennis, cricket and rugby.
In December 2019, its agreement with Real Madrid was nominated for the inaugural Best Partnership of the Year by SportBusiness Award at the Globe Soccer Awards.