Spanish LaLiga champion club Barcelona have ended a 16-year merchandising rights deal with Nike. Barcelona has announced the incorporation of a new company that will oversee the management of its retail, licensing and merchandising activity.
Currently operating as FCB Merchandising, the newly-formed Barça Licensing and Merchandising (BLM), to be wholly owned by Barcelona, will start operations from July 1 and will look after the merchandising business of the club.
Incidentally, July 1 also marks the start of Nike’s new eight-year sponsorship deal with Barcelona, which will run through to the 2025-26 season.
Barcelona’s current merchandising business consists of three of their own stores, 15 licensed stores, 328 licensees, and over 250 employees. According to the club, there are more than 7,000 products contributing to an annual turnover of around $77 million of the merchandising business.
“This new approach pursues several objectives: greater economic profitability, direct control of the brand, the possibility of offering our fans a 100 per cent Barça experience, and a boost to innovation and new technologies,” said a club statement.
The club has finished the 2017-18 LaLiga season as champions, claiming their third title in four years.