News Live Scores

Tyson's cannabis company open to bidding for Camp Nou naming rights

22:02 BST 27/04/2020
Mike Tyson Camp Nou
Barca have put the rights for their iconic stadium up for sale and the boxing icon had, at first, erroneously been linked with an interest

Tyson Ranch CEO Rob Hickman, the man who coordinates the cannabis farm owned by former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson, has left the door open for the company to buy the naming rights for Barcelona's Camp Nou stadium.

Barcelona announced this week that they will sell the naming rights to Camp Nou for the 2020-21 campaign and donate the proceeds to help in the fight against coronavirus.

Many big companies are expected to line up with a bid to have their name associated with the iconic stadium and prestigious club.

Quotes from billionaire investor Alki David have recently been in circulation, with the founder of 'Swissx' - a CBD company based in Gstaad, Switzerland - having incorrectly been referred to as the business partner of Tyson as he announced his interest in Barca's iconic stadium.

But while David is not in fact a partner of the ex-boxer, Hickman did admit that after discussing the erroneous story the execs at Tyson Ranch weren't completely off the idea of bidding on the stadium properly, without David involved.

“We know Alki David but we are not in business,” Hickman told Goal. “That being said, we would definitely be interested in bidding for the potential deal with the stadium. 

“I repeat, Mike and I and Tyson Ranch are not in business with Mr David.”

Should the ranch go ahead with a bid, they will have to come up against David, who claims to be “bullish” of his company's chances of securing naming rights.

“It’s a great stadium,” David told BBC Sport: “It’s something we’ve specifically been looking for to adopt in our company and it seemed like an amazing idea.

“My company is a cannabis company and Spain has a long tradition within the European Union as being a leader or a liberal in the road towards legalisation, so it’s evolved quite naturally.

“This is an opportunity that I am bullish about. It is an historic moment in the history of sport and it fits well with my current plans,” he said earlier this week. “Contact was opened at the start of the week and I am quietly confident the deal will be secured.”

“Manchester City got just over £18 million for their annual rights, Spurs are now seeking £25m, but Barcelona are on a different level.

“This deal with the Nou Camp (sic) is another way to help. It is full of all the energy that Barcelona stands for. My health company has been working hard with top virologists, including the UK's Dr Dorothy Bray, to look at any way we can hit this virus.

"Swissx Nou Camp has a nice ring to it. That is my preferred choice at the moment.”