Reports: Barcelona ask for €300 million to secure Nou Camp naming rights
What's the rumour?
Barcelona is willing to sell the naming rights of their famous stadium for a whopping €300 million according to reports from leading Spanish media outlet, Marca. The Catalan giants had initially set the fee for any potential sponsorship deals at €200 million but have now increased that figure by 50% as they hope to attract major interest from abroad.
In case you didn't know...
The Nou Camp is the largest stadium in both Spain and Europe with a current seating capacity of 99,354. However, ambitious plans to increase the facilities and capacity at the Nou Camp were released a couple of years ago and are due for completion in 2022. Named "Espai Barca" (or "Barca Space"), the project will increase the capacity of the stadium to 105,000 and cost approximately €360 million.
The plans will also embed Barcelona football club and sports club deeper into the local community. With sustainability and energy efficiency high on the agenda for Espai Barca, the works will integrate the local Les Corts neighbourhood with the Nou Camp via a series of open spaces, parks, and pathways.
The heart of the matter
Barcelona will understand the heritage of the club is sacred to its fans around the world, but at the same time want to cash in on the club's global fame and success. With other football brands such as Manchester City and Arsenal receiving huge injections of cash for selling the naming rights of their stadiums, Barcelona will feel that this is the right move to remain competitive in an evermore expensive transfer market.
The Catalan club boasts one of the most recognizable brands in the world and feels that the €300 million asking price is reasonable for any serious sponsor to pay. As part of their global image, they are hoping to attract interest primarily from the United States and Asia. The club is currently on tour in the U.S. as part of their preseason warmup.
A general meeting is scheduled for early 2019 where new naming rights for the Nou Camp will take priority on the agenda. As with all things Barcelona, the proposal will be put to vote, and if it passes as expected, companies can begin the bidding process to have their name attached to the world's most famous stadium.