Chelsea Football Club insured they will have plenty of cash to fund their championship runs for years to come after signing a 5-year deal worth a reported $300 million with Yokohama Rubber Company. The deal will make the tire company the official jersey partner and is the largest commercial deal in history for the London club.
Yokohama will be the front-of-the-jersey sponsor for all the Chelsea teams from the youth teams to the senior team starting for the 2015/16 season. They replace Samsung Electronics, who has adorned the jersey for the past 10 years, as the official jersey partner. Samsung was paying $27 million annually.
‘Chelsea and Yokohama are a perfect fit,” Chelsea Chairman Bruce Buck said at the press conference with manager Jose Mourinho and captain John Terry at his side. “Both are global organisations with a focus on performance and innovation, as well as having huge ambition and an unwavering culture of success. We believe that Yokohama will play a key role in helping us drive our global expansion in international markets such as the US, where they have operated with distinction for many years.”
Chelsea is currently on top of the Premier League table and are in the Round of 16 of the UEFA Champions League. They scored an away goal in the 1-1 draw with Paris Saint-Germain in the first leg and will host the French side at Stamford Bridge on March 11. They face Tottenham in the final of the Capital One Cup this weekend.
‘This shirt partnership with Chelsea will give Yokohama an opportunity to showcase our company to a huge worldwide audience thanks to Chelsea’s ever-growing popularity,” Mr Nagumo, Chairman and CEO of The Yokohama Rubber Company Ltd, said at the press conference. “We see our partnership with Chelsea as an integral part of our global expansion plans as we enter Phase IV of our Grand Design 100 plan. We look forward to launching our iconic new Chelsea Yokohama shirt this summer.”
Chelsea’s global reach was part of the appeal for Yokohama who employee over 20,000 workers in 120 countries. Chelsea was the most watched Premier League side on TV globally last season and have more the 500 million fans around the world.
The previous commercial record deal for the Blues was the 10-year $45o million one with apparel sponsor adidas. Chelsea FC, adidas, and Yokohama will unveil the new home, away, and third jerseys this summer.
The best selection of official Chelsea Football Club gear in the U.S. is available at World Soccer Shop.
Are you going to buy a 2015/16 Chelsea jersey with the new Yokohama sponsor logo on the front?