Despite the sub-par performances, Steve Bruce’s Toon Army has survived to play another year in the Premier League. Much to the fans’ chagrin, both he and club owner Mike Ashley remain at the helm. Here are their partners going into the 2021-22 season.
Fun88 – Chinese sports betting firm Fun88 has been Newcastle United’s principal kit sponsor since 2017 – a deal that has seen Fun88’s logo emblazoned at the front of their matchday and training kits. The two last renewed their partnership in a ‘long-term’ agreement in July 2020 in a deal reportedly worth £6.5m annually.
Castore – The Liverpool-headquartered British sportswear brand became the club’s new kit supplier in July 2021, replacing German rival brand Puma that supplied the United kits for the previous eleven years. Reportedly worth £5m per year, the ‘multi-year’ deal will not only see Castore design the various matchday and training kits for the club, it will also see the sportswear brand handle the e-commerce operations at the club. This will include refurbishment of United’s physical and online stores as well as increased merchandising opportunities.
Sports Direct – To say that club owner Mike Ashley has had a strained relationship with the club’s fans would be a massive understatement.
Retrospectively, it is clear to everyone that Ashley bought Newcastle United in 2007 with the sole purpose of promoting and growing his sports retail brand, Sports Direct, across the world. Conflict between Ashley and the Newcastle fans reached an all-time high when the former decided to rename the club’s home ground, St James’ Park, to Sports Direct Arena. It didn’t last long, however, as the stadium’s name was restored a year later when its naming rights were purchased by Newcastle’s then principal sponsor, Wonga.
It is only recently that Ashley made the financial details of the Sports Direct advertising at the St. James’ public. Newcastle were paid £1.113m by Sports Direct for the in-ground advertising for the 2018-19 season, and around £385k the season before. The 2019-20 season saw that amped up to £2m annually.
Despite the controversies, Sports Direct will remain a top-tier partner of the club and have a strong presence at the St. James’ Park, as long as Ashley owns the club.
Carling – Carling brewery signed an initial four-year agreement with Newcastle United as their official beer partner in a £3m deal in June 2007. Fourteen years later, the deal still stands. As part of the deal, Carling holds pouring rights inside St. James’ Park.
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Bet365 – The Stoke-on-Trent-headquartered British online gambling company serves as the Official Betting Partner of Newcastle United.
Pulman Volkswagen – The North-Eastern British car dealership for Volkswagen vehicles serves as the Official Vehicle Partner to Newcastle United. Pulman first became the club’s official car supplier in December 2009 before being promoted to Platinum Partnership in November 2015.
Energy Impact – Essex-based Energy Impact is an energy-saving solutions provider that serves as an Associate Partner to Newcastle United. Since 2008, the two have worked together to regulate the carbon emissions generated by the operations at the club stadium in order to improve United’s score as a green energy ‘world champion’. The club were awarded the Carbon Trust Standard award in 2012 for being the world’s first ever ‘carbon positive’ football club.
Perfect Image – Perfect Image is an IT solutions provider based in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Since October 2020, it serves as an Associate Partner to Newcastle United on a six-figure contract, undertaking the delivery and management of Microsoft applications, data and analytics solutions, and cloud infrastructure for the club.