By Nsiiro Jacob
Barclays will not be the headline sponsor of the Premier League next season, according to Bloomberg. The British bank has sponsored the top English football division for the past 15 years, taking over from Carling beer in 2001. It comes as Barclays is looking to scale back its European operations and focus primarily on the UK and the US. The Premier League sponsorship deal was Â£40 million ($57 million) a year in 2015, but Barclays has seen about Â£20 billion worth of profit wiped out from misconduct charges over the past five years. Despite no longer being the headline sponsor, Barclays will stay on as the “official bank” of the Premiership.
The league has decided to diversify its sponsorship deals, forgoing a headline sponsor entirely and instead have sponsors for individual categories as the Olympics does. For example, the sportswear company Nike has become the official sponsor of the footballs. The Premier League was formed in 1992 and is the most watched football league in the world, broadcast in 212 territories to a TV audience of over 4.7 billion people.