Spotify becomes FC Barcelona’s main shirt sponsor

The Spotify name and logo will adorn the front of FC Barcelona men’s and women’s shirts for the 2022-2023 season, starting July 1. The four-season sponsorship deal also includes the naming rights to Barcelona’s famous Camp Nou stadium, temporarily renaming it Spotify Camp. No. The agreement is subject to ratification by the Barcelona Members’ Assembly, which will be held in April. No official financial figures have been announced, but ESPN reports that sources previously pegged the deal at 280 million euros (about $307 million). The deal comes after the Barcelona CEO left the club, reportedly due to his unhappiness with the final terms of the Spotify deal. The club’s La Liga rivals Real Madrid are reportedly earning €70m per season from their main shirt sponsor Emirates.

In an official statement, Alex Norström, Spotify’s freemium commercial director, said of the company’s plans for Camp Nou:

Spotify is working with Barca to leverage our access to stadium assets to amplify artists and enable discovery. For example, using dynamic digital screens to showcase and geographically target relevant artists to Barça’s global TV audience. While viewers in Europe may see one message about an artist, viewers in India might receive a different, locally relevant message.

Spotify co-founder and CEO Daniel Ek is a longtime fan of Arsenal Football Club, and he has tried his hand at the top echelons of world football before. Last year he led a consortium that made a £1.8billion bid to take over ownership of the London club. At the time of the offer, Ek was worth $4.7 billion and Spotify was worth $54 billion, according to Forbes. The offer was rejected by Arsenal owners Kroenke Sports Enterprises.

FC Barcelona, ​​founded in 1899, did not have a main shirt sponsor until 2006, when the club entered into an agreement with UNICEF. (In contrast, Real Madrid, founded in 1902, secured their first main shirt sponsor in 1982.) The UNICEF deal lasted until 2011, when Barcelona opted for a more lucrative deal with Qatar Sports. Investment worth 30 million per season. The deals have only become more profitable, culminating in a €55m per season deal with Rakuten which will expire at the end of the 2021-22 season. The Japanese e-commerce giant reportedly chose not to extend its deal with Barcelona due to the departure of superstar Lionel Messi and the club’s massive debts, which reached 1.35 billion euros in August 2021.

Elizabeth J. Harless