The agreement was signed by Ahmad Julfar, CEO of etisalat Group, and Sandro Rosell , president of FC Barcelona, on Monday at the club’s Camp Nou stadium.
The sponsorship deal, the value of which was not disclosed, means etisalat will be Barcelona’s main sponsor in 15 countries, including the United Arab Emirates, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Benin, Togo, Niger, Gabon and the Central African Republic.
“I am delighted that this deal has been extended for another four years. FC Barcelona won three straight championships the year after we signed the partnership four years ago,” Julfar said after the signing ceremony.
“When we met last time the crowd was very small and now the crowd has grown bigger. This shows that our family is growing. So, hopefully, next year the team will repeat the same performance,” he said.
“If we win six cups next season, will etisalat give us a discount on the sponsorship deal?” Rosell joked.
He said etisalat has 140 million customers and FC Barcelona 350 million fans around the world.
“There is space to grow. As you [etisalat] are growing, we will also grow and that is what we are expecting from this deal,” Rosell said.
“We think we are family as you [Julfar] rightly said. My great grandfather was a member of this club, not only that, my father and my daughters are members of this club. Even my grandchildren will be members of this club,” he said.
According to Deloitte’s latest “Football Money League” rankings published in January, FC Barcelona were the second richest club behind Real Madrid in 2011-2012.