Manchester United have been named as the top club in Europe’s top five leagues in terms of sponsorship revenue.
The report by media company CSM Sport & Entertainment analysed sponsorship deals spanning across the top five European football leagues – in England, Spain, Italy, Germany and France.
Manchester United topped the club-by-club list, generating €269 million (£235m/$309m) per year from 68 commercial deals. Spanish champions Barcelona were close behind, with a yearly income of €261m (£229m/$299m) – the only other club to generate more than €200m.
European heavyweights Bayern Munich and Real Madrid lead a quartet of English clubs (Chelsea, Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool) in revenue, while the top 10 was rounded off by the current champions of France and Italy – Paris Saint-Germain and Juventus.
Eleventh-placed Borussia Dortmund completed CSM’s top sponsorship list, despite having more sponsor deals than any of the top 10 clubs with 71 – generating just €80m (£70m/$92m) per-year.
With its teams forming half of the top 10, it is no surprise that England’s Premier League leads by some margin in Europe, making over €1.2 billion (£1.1bn/$1.4bn) a year from 440 sponsorship agreements.
Teams in Germany’s Bundesliga make the most deals in Europe with 617, which places the league second in Europe, but a low price-by-deal ratio sees these only generate €734.7m (£328m/$430m) in income.
In contrast, Spain’s top clubs have fewer deals (363) than leagues in Germany and Italy, yet create €678.5m (£595m/$778m) worth of revenue.
Italy’s Serie A generates the least money per sponsorship deal, making €439.3m (£385m/$505m) from 547 agreements.
The French top tier, Ligue 1 generates €357.8m (£314m/$411m) from 306 deals, with top club PSG making up €112m (£98m/$128m) of that figure – almost a third of the entire league.
The top 11 Individual sectors were also ranked – with the financial sector investing the most money across the top five European leagues with €314m (£275m/$360m). The automotive sector invests €305m (£267m/$350m), albeit from considerably fewer agreements (55) compared to the 129 from financial companies.
Airlines are third, contributing the most per agreement, with €266m (£233m/$305m) worth of investments making up just 22 agreements – a rate of just over €12m (£11m/$14m) a deal.
The rest of the top 11 is made up of bookmakers, breweries, energy firms, telecommunications, tyre companies, hardware, insurance and food sectors.
When sorted by specific brands, airline Fly Emirates – which is the shirt sponsor of three clubs in the top 10 – invest €178m (£156m/$204m) in sponsorship deals. That figure is over double that of second-placed gas company Gazprom, which only invests €80m (£70m/$92m). Carmaker Nissan is joined by beer brand Heineken and gaming brand PlayStation 4 in the top five.
Manchester United’s shirt sponsor deal with Chevrolet is the car brand’s only soccer deal – yet the €60m (£53m/$69m) per-year agreement leaves the brand seventh on the list.