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FC Barcelona has extended its partnership with telecommunications firm Etisalat through to June 30, 2017, while the club has announced it will unveil its new shirt sponsorship agreement with Qatar Airways on March 4.

FC Barcelona has extended its partnership with telecommunications firm Etisalat through to June 30, 2017, while the club has announced it will unveil its new shirt sponsorship agreement with Qatar Airways on March 4.

UAE-based telco Etisalat will serve as a premium sponsor of Barcelona in a number of countries, including the UAE, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Benin, Togo, Niger, Gabon and the Central African Republic. Barcelona president Sandro Rosell said: “Etisalat is a pioneer in telecommunications in the Middle East, Africa and Asia, who are helping us to get closer and strengthen our connection with our fans in those areas. This will help us to transmit our feelings for the club and also to grow socially and economically.”

Executive director of the Etisalat Group, Ahmad Jular, added: “As a global telecommunications operator, it makes great sense for us to associate ourselves with a first class club which is interested in widening its international fan base. This association is a unique opportunity to show the capacity of Etisalat Group as a telecommunications operator. It gives us a strong competitive advantage and strengthens our emotional links with our present and future clients. We are looking forward to sharing FC Barcelona’s talent with our clients.”

Next week’s presentation ceremony comes after Barcelona announced in November that Qatar Airways will take over as the club’s shirt sponsor from the start of the 2013-14 season as part of the Catalan giant’s agreement with Qatar Sports Investments (QSI). Barcelona stated last year that the current five-year contract signed with QSI permitted the possibility of including a new logo on the shirt from the third season of the agreement. The Qatar Foundation has served as the club’s shirt sponsor for the past two campaigns, succeeding Unicef, which became the first brand to occupy Barcelona’s famous shirts after the club agreed to such deals in August 2003. Under the new arrangement, Qatar Foundation will revert to the role of official human development partner of FC Barcelona.

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