The end of the Middle Eastern sponsorship world as we know it?

After Donald Trump’s win a couple of weeks ago, former prime minister of Sweden, Carl Bildt, stated: “This is the end of the western world as we know it”. (Column)

This post was first published in SportsBizTrends.com newsletter November 21.

And after visiting TrendWatching seminar in London last week, I’m in a good mood. So good that I stick my head out in the winter-wind and paraphrase my countryman:

We are now experiencing the end of the Middle Eastern sponsorship world as we know it.

Okay?
Yes, enjoy shirts and stadiums with Emirates, Etihad and Qatar Airways logos as long as you can.

Motivate, please…
After reading and thinking about last week’s killer-news (FC Barcelona and Japanese e-conglomerate Rakuten shirt sponsorship), I think we’re watching the end of the Middle Eastern sponsorship world as we know it.

My evidence is none (of course), it’s just a feeling I get when I combine what I hear and read about FC Barcelona and Qatar Airways (i.e. ethics and human rights)…

…combined with the buzz about the Middle Eastern macro economy.

Did you just say ‘macro economy’?
Yes, a great marketer have to keep up with not just (sports) industry news.

The fact is that Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, United Arab Emirates have sold bonds or took syndicated loans to plug their deficits, just recent (macro time). Plus Kuwait (it will be the country’s first foreign debt in around two decades).

Bonus fact: Oil income contributed around 95 percent of public revenues in those years. (Article)

Bonus-bonus fact: During the past two years, oil has lost around 60 percent of its value. (Oil chart)

*Doing my math*

So, what’s next?
If you’re attractive enough and your dance partner can’t keep it up, someone else will take your hand. And as you might know, companies like Emirates, Etihad and Qatar (Airways) have been quite nice dancers the last decade.

We all know about the rising East (Asia, particularly China), so don’t be surprised if this is (also) the end of the Eastern world as we know it. Or the end of the beginning.

Article: Barcelona And The Premier League Provide The Entertainment, Asia The Money

On the other hand
I might just be wrong. Some say that the sponsorship will continue with Qatar Airways participating as a “club global partner”.

Maybe FC Barcelona will have the cake and eat it too. And I’m standing here without both cake and with the wrong strategic recipe.

If so – damn it!

If not – told you. ?

“Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.” – Winston Churchill

This post was first published in SportsBizTrends.com newsletter November 21 2016.

About the author

Magnus Berglund

Fristående sponsringsrådgivare och grundare av Kinglet & Co. De senaste åren har han arbetat som planner och sponsorstrateg till flera av Sveriges mest kända varumärken, tillika största sponsorer och rättighetsinnehavare.

Skriver sedan 2012 Sponsringsbloggen hos Dagens Media och krönikor hos Idrottens Affärer. Föreläsare TEDx, TEDxYouth, ICE London samt jurymedlem Gyllene Hjulet, som 2014 och 2017 utsåg Årets Bästa Sponsring och Årets Bästa Rättighetsinnehavare.

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