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Emaar signs $80m deal with Saudi Pro League club Al Hilal

Dubai-based property development company Emaar has signed a five-year front-of-shirt partnership with Saudi Professional League club Al Hilal, starting from next season.

According to social media reports, the deal with the Riyadh- based club is worth 305m riyals ($81.3m/$71.4m) over the term, or $16.3m per year.

The right fee is reportedly twice the annual amount paid by the current front of-shirt sponsor, Saudi conglomerate Kingdom Holdings.

The strategic partnership was signed by Mohamed Alabbar, chairman of Emaar, and Fahad Bin Saad bin Nafal, the president of the club.

Alabbar said: “Our partnership with Al Hilal, one of the largest clubs in Asia, enhances our keenness to move forward to a wider investment horizon.”

Emaar identified Al Hilal as the best fit after an extensive study of sports properties in the Middle East.

“Al Hilal’s outstanding popularity and continuous achievement have been central in our decision to sign this partnership,” Alabbar said.

Al Hilal has won the Saudi Professional League a record 15 times. It has also won six Asian Football Confederation titles, including the AFC Champions League in 1991 and 2000. It has been the losing AFC Champions League finalist four times, most recently in 2017.

Emaar as best-known as the owner of the Burj Khalifa tower in Dubai. It is also developer of residential communities, malls, hospitality and entertainment attractions.