Etisalat Group, the leading telecommunications operator in the Middle East, Africa and Asia, and FC Barcelona today announced the renewal of a four-year partnership agreement. The deal means the UAE-based company is FC Barcelona official partner in the UAE, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, the Ivory Coast, Benin, Togo, Niger, Gabon and Central Africa Republic.
The contract was signed during Mobile World Congress 2013 – a major event for the telecommunications industry taking place in Barcelona – at FC Barcelona’s stadium, Camp Nou, by Mr Ahmad Abdulkarim Julfar, CEO of the Etisalat Group and Sandro Rosell, the president of FC Barcelona. They were accompanied by Steven Evans, Etisalat’s CEO for Nigeria, Khalid Al Kaf, CEO for Mobily (which operates in Saudi Arabia), Nagi Abboud, CEO for Atlantique Telecom, its Chief Regional Officer for Africa, Essa Al Haddad and Rainer Rathgeber, Etisalat Group’s Chief Commercial Officer.
Speaking about the partnership, Ahmad Julfar, CEO at the Etisalat Group, said: “As a global telecommunications operator, it makes sense for us to partner with a world-class football club interested in expanding its international fan base. This partnership presents a unique opportunity for us to demonstrate Etisalat Group’s capabilities as a telecommunications operator, while allowing FC Barcelona to engage new fans in the Middle East, Africa and Asia. We very much look forward to sharing the talent of FC Barcelona with our customers.”
Steven Evans, Chief Executive Officer at Etisalat Nigeria said,” Football is a major past-time in Nigeria and across Africa. People from all walks of life enjoy this sport and other activities associated with it. By partnering with FC Barcelona, we are able to allow our customers and Nigerians especially, to extend their support to the world’s most famous football team. The FCB partnership creates a suitable platform to connect with customers across segments that are passionate about international football. Etisalat will continue to support the development of sports in Nigeria and provide platforms such as this to key into the passion of Nigerians”.
Sandro Rosell, the president of FC Barcelona, added: “We want to attract new fans from around the world and our ongoing partnership with Etisalat has created another way for us to enhance our image and presence in the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Our team looks forward to playing for Etisalat Group’s customers and is excited about how easy they are making it for committed and potential fans to view our matches.”