Emirates Airlines signs up as sixth Fifa partner

LONDON - Football governing body Fifa has added Emirates to its roster of partners in a £110m deal, which gives the airline core sponsorship rights to all Fifa competitions.

The airline has signed as the sixth and final Fifa partner from 2007 to 2014, It joins existing sponsors including Adidas, Hyundai, Sony, Coca-Cola and Visa.

The six partners are in the top tier of Fifa's new sponsorship programme, which awards six blue-chip corporations the highest level of affiliation to the body over an eight-year period.

Emirates will enjoy sponsorship rights to all Fifa competitions, including the 2010 Fifa World Cup South Africa and the 2014 World Cup, as well as to the world football governing body's special events and development initiatives.

The association between Emirates and Fifa began in 2003 when it was an official partner of the Fifa World Youth Championships in the United Arab Emirates.

Soon after, the Dubai-based airline signed up as one of 15 official partners of this summer's World Cup in Germany.

Joseph Blatter, Fifa president, said: "I am immensely proud that this prestigious and successful airline has once again decided to place its faith in Fifa and football -- this time at an even higher level and with a longer-term commitment."

Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum, Emirates group chairman, said: "We believe sport is an ideal vehicle to communicate with our passengers and football is a perfect platform for us to share and enjoy their passion and commitment.

"This partnership will enable us to achieve global awareness of our brand at football events all around the world as well as in our home territory of Dubai."

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