Turkish football club Galatasaray explores potential sponsorship deal with Kuwait Airways

Airline says the two parties are discussing commercial co-operation opportunities

Galatasaray players celebrate after scoring against GZT Giresunspor in the Turkish league. Getty
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Turkish football club Galatasaray said it is in early stage talks with Kuwait Airways for a potential sponsorship deal.

If the two parties reach an agreement, it would mark the first major deal between a Gulf airline and a Turkish football club.

“Our negotiations with the international airline company Kuwait Airways are still at the starting point,” Istanbul-based Galatasaray said in a stock exchange filing to Borsa Istanbul.

“Since the day we took office, we have been working on strengthening our relations with our existing business partners and on new collaborations. In this context, our work with various institutions, which has reached different stages, continues,” the Galatasaray Sports Club Association said.

Kuwait Airways said a delegation visited the club “to discuss ways of commercial co-operation between the two parties”, according to a tweet on its official account. However, it denied that any deal had been signed so far.

When approached for further details on the talks, Kuwait Airways referred The National to its tweets.

Companies in the Gulf, notably airlines, have struck several major sponsorship agreements with some of the world's biggest sports clubs over the years.

Emirates has signed several deals with AC Milan, Arsenal, Real Madrid, Greece's Olympiakos, Portugal's Benfica and French club Lyon.

The deals reflect Emirates' continued strategy of extending its reach and visibility through the sport, the airline said.

Aside from partnerships with some of the biggest clubs in European football, Emirates also sponsors golf, tennis, rugby, cricket, horse racing and motorsport events around the world.

Meanwhile, Etihad Airways has a long-standing partnership with Manchester City football club, the Formula One Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and the Special Olympics.

In March, the Turkish unit of Bahrain-based cryptocurrency platform Rain also signed a deal to become the chest sponsor of Istanbul football club Besiktas until the end of 2023/2024 season, according to their websites.

A Galatasaray supporter holds his scarf at the start of a Europa League football match between Galatasaray and Barcelona in Istanbul in March.  AFP
Updated: July 04, 2022, 11:08 AM