Bottom’s up: Manchester United announce three-year sponsor extension with Thai beer giants Singha

By Dean Wilkins

Having become the first sports club to conquer the $3billion mark, Manchester United’s sponsors Singha will be celebrating the announcement of a three-year contract extension to partner the planet’s wealthiest team.

The Premier League leaders’ global commercial dominance cemented their place at the top of Forbes magazine’s Rich List 100, claiming their valuation topped $3.3billion (£2.1billion).

Thailand’s Roon Bawd Brewery, producers of Singha, secured a further three years as United’s official beer partner until 2016 as both parties continue to build an international presence.

United’s commercial director Richard Arnold said: “Singha celebrates its 80th anniversary in 2013 and what better way to commemorate this than to renew our successful relationship.

“Manchester United is delighted to be keeping Singha within its family of sponsors and looking forward to building on the fantastic achievements the partnership has created so far.

“I am confident the next three years will be just as positive.”

Recent deals with market leaders in China, Japan, Indonesia and America have boosted commercial sales, while qualifying for the Champions League knockout stages and the prospect of a new Premier League rights package have also added to their bounty.

Owners Malcolm Glazer and his family have seen their overall wealth increase dramatically, along with renowned investor George Soros who owns a 7.5% stake, as United’s enterprise value (equity plus debt) surpasses closest rivals the Dallas Cowboys by more than $1billion.

Their colossal commercial deals and floating on the stock exchange helped United reduce their overall debt to under £400million for the first time during their Glazer family era.

Real Madrid held onto their place as the planet’s second most-wealthy football club ($1.9billion), while Arsenal ($1.3billion) are the Premier League’s second richest.

Rivals Manchester City are 12 places lower and, despite their hefty spending power and lucrative development projects, are almost eight times less valuable than United at $443million.

Image courtesy of aunman via YouTube, with thanks

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