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Barça’s key men in the negotiations for the sponsorship of the shirt

BarcelonaBarça, while growing in the hands of Xavi Hernández in the field of sports and is solving its problems with the fair play of the League thanks to the operations of Mateu Alemany, he has long faced another great challenge in the offices: finding a new main sponsor for the game shirt, given that the contract with the current one, Rakuten, ends this 30 June. Although it is an issue that fully involves the commercial department, the main people in charge of the negotiations, which ARA already said were mainly with top multinationals in the technology sector, are two club executives, a manager and an advisor. external. All of them hope to have an operation completed before February, but time is running out and, for now, nothing is ruled out.

Àlex Barbany, Barça’s new director, who joined the club with Joan Laporta’s victory in the March elections, is playing with his prestige after some internal voices of the club are already questioning him. its value for the charge. Barbany has many open folders on the table and has so far failed to close any major new entrants to the club in a time of economic emergencies. Nor is a project being carried out that he commissioned to design and present during the election campaign, the Barça Experience Centers, commercial facilities of the Catalan entity that were to be located in strategic points of the world capitals .

But the new revenue manager is far from alone at the helm of the operation to find a new top t-shirt sponsor. The other executive who is fully involved in the negotiations is the general manager, Ferran Reverter, who has great recognition inside and outside the club despite the fact that there are sources who consider that he still lacks a bit of shooting in the world of football. . The third leg is the director Juli Guiu, the vice president of marketing. In addition, all three are receiving external advice from a person who has been involved in the project of Laporta’s return to the presidency of Barça.

Disconnection between the sales department and senior officials

“It will be very difficult to raise funds at the beginning of the year because the budgets of the companies will be closed in the third and fourth quarters,” said sources in the commercial department, which is playing a secondary role in these negotiations. In fact, the department has had a power vacuum since the last commercial director, Jordi Camps, left in mid-September. He was the third professional to leave the post in 2021, after Xavier Asensi and Cinto Ajram, who finally turned down the offer for professional reasons.

“Since Asensi left in January, everything is in order stand by, there has been no change in business strategy because no one has come in, ”the source said. He also reports that “the commercial area is secluded, as if it does not need the involvement of senior officials,” and that the relationship with sponsors is mostly done by e-mail, the opposite of what is needed when the operation exceeds the million euros, which is to travel, to create a personal relationship with the other party and to have a fluid conversation between the high officials ”.

The main sponsorship of the t-shirt is not the only problem

In addition to the main sponsor of the jersey, the contracts with Beko, the sponsor of the training clothes that he does not intend to renew, and with Stanley, the global sponsor and of the women’s first team, also end on June 30. In addition, the left sleeve of the game shirt is still free after Beko resigned last summer. In the worst case, Barça could end the year with only twenty sponsors. In April 2019 it had 42, the historical record.

But this week, the club has announced a new sponsor: Gamers Hub Media Events Europe, which will be sponsoring the e-sports section. On the other hand, as reported by ARA, Holger Bittner, until now an employee of Aqipa Iberia, owned by the sports vice-president Rafa Yuste, is the new signing of Barça’s commercial department.

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