Barcelona confirms extension of Qatar Airways shirt sponsorship

Barcelona has today (Tuesday) confirmed a one-season extension to its main sponsorship agreement with Qatar Airways, with the Spanish Liga football club stating the new contract will run under the same conditions as the previous deal.

Qatar’s national carrier has served as Barcelona’s front-of-shirt sponsor since the 2013-14 season but its contract, said to be worth around €32m ($35.3m) per year, expired at the end of the 2015-16 campaign.

Under the extension, the partnership will now run through the forthcoming 2016-17 season.

Barcelona’s vice-president of marketing and communication, Manel Arroyo, said: “Qatar Airways has helped us to make Barça bigger in recent years. The success that has accompanied the club has partly been their work. It is a pleasure to be able to work together for another season and we hope to continue along the same lines of mutual growth.”

Confirmation of the shirt sponsorship deal today comes after Spanish newspaper AS yesterday (Monday) reported that Qatar Airways is also interested in naming rights to the Camp Nou, a contract that Barcelona is currently seeking to sell amid a major redevelopment project for its home stadium.

Qatar Airways replaced non-profit organisation the Qatar Foundation as the club’s main shirt sponsor. The Qatar Foundation held the position during the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons as part of the club’s association with Qatar Sports Investments.

United Nations children’s fund Unicef became Barcelona's first-ever front-of-shirt sponsor in 2006. Unicef, whose branding now features on the back of the club's shirts, occupied the prime spot until the Qatar Foundation took over in 2011.