New York City FC, the new Major League Soccer (MLS) franchise, has announced a major partnership with Etihad Airways.
The Abu Dhabi-based airline becomes the club’s Principal Partner which will see its branding on all of the team’s playing jerseys.
In conjunction with the uniform sponsorship, Etihad Airways also becomes one of the club’s Founding Partners.
The announcement was made in front of the club’s fans as the historic first home jersey, which is now available for pre-sale, was unveiled for the first time in New York City.
Tim Pernetti, Chief Business Officer, New York City FC, and James Hogan, President and Chief Executive, Etihad Airways, joined the club’s first marquee player, David Villa, at New York’s Terminal 5 venue for the announcement.
The five-year deal is New York City FC’s most significant partnership to date and will see a substantial presence for Etihad Airways’ brand across the team’s playing kits, on game days at the club’s first home, Yankee Stadium, and across its digital platforms.
The wide-ranging partnership will also provide Etihad Airways with unique benefits such as player appearances and access to the team’s training sessions.
Tim Pernetti said: “This is a milestone day for New York City Football Club. Our first home jersey is a huge part of our identity and we are proud that our kit and our team will be so strongly associated with a partner of the calibre of Etihad Airways. Today will be remembered as one of our most significant landmark moments as we build towards our historic inaugural season, due to kick off this coming March.
“This is just the first day of what we firmly believe will be a lasting and fruitful relationship, both for New York City Football Club and for Etihad Airways. We cannot wait to start working together to provide a fantastic experience for New Yorkers.”
James Hogan said: “Etihad Airways has a strong affinity with New York as it was the airline’s first US destination to be launched in 2006. We are delighted to be able to further strengthen our ties with the city through this partnership with New York City Football Club.
“Etihad Airways has a strong tradition of leading community-based activities and initiatives with our sports partners. We look forward to continuing this with New York City Football Club and its fans to promote the sport and the values such as team-work, winning and the pursuit of excellence.”
The partnership agreement develops the hugely successful relationship between Etihad Airways and New York City FC’s sister clubs in City Football Group. These include Barclays Premier League Champions Manchester City FC, and Australia’s A-League team, Melbourne City FC.
The deal with New York City FC builds upon Etihad Airways’ position as official airline partner of MLS which was announced in March this year. This has seen the Etihad Airways logo and its messages beamed across LED pitch-side advertising and on MLS digital platforms throughout the 2014 season.