Manchester United has arguably the most recognisable sports uniform in the world and yesterday they announced Adidas will pay the club $US1.3 billion over 10 years for the right to manufacturer the uniform and sell replicas.
That’s a huge number that looks even bigger when we put it into perspective.
With an average annual value of $US128 million per year, Manchester United will be paid more than the next two largest kit manufacturing deals combined — Real Madrid in Spain’s La Liga ($53.2 million per year) and Chelsea F.C. in England’s Premier League ($51.5 million per year), both also with Adidas.
United’s deal is also nearly three times as much as Nike’s biggest deal, $US46.3 million with Barcelona in La Liga.
But that is just part of the story. Manchester United also has a deal with Chevrolet as the kit’s sponsor that will pay the team an an average of $US79.9 million per year. In other words, Manchester United will increase their revenue by $US136.0 million in two years from their kits alone.
Things look even crazier if we compare those deals to the NFL.
Manchester United’s $US207.9 million in annual uniform revenue is more than the $187.7 million every NFL team earned last year in revenue sharing, which includes uniforms, merchandising, and national television revenues combined.
Certainly there are a handful of teams in the NFL whose identity is worth more than the average, but the NFL’s revenue sharing system limits what those teams can make.
Not bad for a team that finished seventh in the Premier League this past season.
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