Chelsea Football Club, which seems to have lost its nickname of ”the pensioners”, has a new ”Platinum” supporter, Etihad Airways. The Abu Dhabi-based carrier joins Heineken, viagogo (online ticket exchange), Thomas Cook and Sky in this grade of backer. The west London club”s main sponsors remain as Samsung and Adidas.
Among the highlights of the new partnership will be extensive Etihad branding at Stamford Bridge for Barclays Premier League, FA Cup and Carling Cup matches. The airline will also feature regularly in match day programmes and other Chelsea publications.
Crowned Premier League champions in 2005 and 2006, Chelsea were sponsored by Etihad's more established Gulf area rival Emirates, which moved across London to a brand new stadium named after the airline. Clearly the airline marketing war will continue.
Etihad CEO James Hogan, was on hand at Chelsea's South London training ground to make the announcement.
”The partnership with Chelsea marks a new and exciting chapter in the history of Etihad Airways and will provide the airline with terrific exposure to a global audience,” he said.
”It also illustrates Etihad's ambitions to be associated with the best names in sport and therefore we are delighted that the Etihad brand will be seen every week at Stamford Bridge and on Chelsea media and merchandise.”
In addition to the placement of Etihad's logo and branding at the English Premier League team's Stamford Bridge stadium in west London, the partnership will see the Abu Dhabi-based airline and Chelsea work together on several projects including potential team tours to the UAE and the Far East.