Emirates Adds Benfica to its Football Portfolio

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At a press conference in Lisbon, Emirates announced a three-year shirt sponsorship agreement with Portuguese club Benfica. 

Emirates strengthens its football clubs portfolio by partnering with Sport Lisboa e Benfica. Emirates will be the club’s official airline and main shirt sponsor until the end of the 2017/2018 season. 

Along with the Benfica agreement, Emirates’ on-going commitment to expand its presence in the country is today emphasised with the confirmation of a second daily flight to the city, starting in early 2016.

Lisbon joined the airline’s route network in July 2012 and since that time nearly 500,000 customers have travelled to and from Dubai, to Portugal. This additional daily flight will increase capacity on the route to over 10,000 seats each week. For customers in Portugal, it means more opportunities to experience the award-winning Emirates product, and easy and convenient travel choices – to Dubai and beyond. 

Sir Tim Clark said this of the partnership; “Expanding our connection with Benfica today highlights our commitment to sports sponsorship around the world, a marketing strategy adopted at an early stage of the airline’s 30 years. As one of the top football club’s in Europe and with a strong international appeal, Benfica is well placed to join the Emirates sponsorship portfolio.”

“This announcement is not just about sport, it is also an Emirates investment in Portugal. Since we started flying from Dubai to Lisbon in 2012, we have experienced a sturdy demand for our daily flight and now we look to 2016 and doubling the ways to increase the mutually beneficial trade and tourism our flights brings to the country.”  

Benfica President, Luis Filipe Vieira said: ““We share with Emirates a bold and modern vision, a growth strategy sustained in medium and long term projects and in the nonconformity of those who always assume new challenges.

The strength of a new idea was the seed of our foundation in 1904. From now on the strength of this new partnership with Emirates will make us fly higher and reach further. Sport Lisboa e Benfica was born in Portugal, but it’s a club of the world that turned global with Eusébio, Coluna, Simões, José Augusto and many other players who left a heritage of amazing football and european conquests that we aim to repeat.

After the partnership with our youth football, to be able to announce Emirates as the main sponsor of Benfica’s professional football is an honor and a responsibility. Benfica will now be a part of an elite group of football clubs of which many aim to be a part of, but few succeed: to show of Fly Emirates in their jerseys! We will know how to honor this responsibility.”

With a rich and successful history, Benfica is truly one of Europe’s strongest clubs and continues its record holding status this year as the team lifts its 34th Primiera Liga trophy, another in a long list of domestic and international acknowledgments. The prestigious club will play a key role in the Emirates’ sponsorship portfolio made of top sporting clubs, tournaments and high profile cultural events worldwide. [Source: SLBenfica.pt]

Emirates is one of the fewest football sponsors that continues its momentum on clubs sponsorship. After pulling out of FIFA World Cup sponsorship, Emirates focuses massively on clubs sponsorship. With AC Milan, PSG, Arsenal plus the Emirates Stadium, Hamburger SV, Real Madrid and Olympiacos, the UAE based airline is showing a consistent strategy to be a key player in global football sponsorship.

Karl Lusbec