Manchester City become first Premier League club to land sleeve sponsorship with Nexen Tire deal

Nexen's branding will appear on the club's sleeve during league games from the start of next season

Manchester City have become the first Premier League club to make use of the new regulations allowing clubs to have sponsorship branding on their shirt sleeves after agreeing a deal with existing partner Nexen Tire.

The Korean tire giant agreed a three-year deal with the club which will see its branding feature on Manchester City's playing kit for all league games from the start of the 2017/18 season and will include both the men's and women's team.

"At Manchester City, we are always striving to take an original approach to our commercial partnerships, creating great relationships and great content for our fans," said Ferran Soriano, Manchester City chief executive.

"We are especially pleased to be the first Premier League club to secure an official sleeve partner. Nexen is an exciting and growing brand and we are extremely happy both to have extended and grown our relationship."

Nexen Tire chief executive, Travis Kang, added: "As a Korean company, we consider it an honour to announce the first EPL club sleeve branding partnership for one of the world's greatest football clubs, Manchester City, introducing the Nexen Tire brand to football fans worldwide."

The brand originally partnered with City in 2015 and has activated its sponsorship through football challenges with first team players Raheem Sterling, Kelechi Iheanacho and Nolito.

League bosses announced earlier this month that clubs would now be permitted to sell the rights to their left shirt sleeve from the start of the 2017/18 season onwards. The move mirrors the commercial approach long used by other European Leagues such as La Liga where FC Barcelona have Beko branding on their shirt sleeve.

Manchester City's chief commercial officer, Tom Glick, described the new sleeve branding opportunities as an "incredibly valuable asset for the right partner".

"They are manufacturing in multiple countries and are a fast growing, global brand who can truly take advantage of everything that the Premier League and Manchester City have to offer."

The introduction of the additional kit sponsorship opportunity illustrates the growing commercialisation of the sport, but it also provides English clubs with an additional revenue stream at a time when the future of huge broadcast revenues begins to look uncertain as a result of the declining TV audience numbers.

Some clubs in the Premier League will be unable to follow City's lead due to contract stipulations with the main front of shirt sponsors which prohibit the appearance of a second brand on the kit.

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Tony Connelly

I cover media, marketing and sponsorship news within the sports industry. This includes breaking news as well as writing feature pieces with insights from experts in the sports marketing world.

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