Manchester United could earn an additional £26.2m per year by rebranding Old Trafford, according to a study on the growing value of stadium naming rights in the Premier League.
United’s stadium naming rights are by far the most valuable in the English top flight and worth £7.1m more than those of Manchester City, says advisory firm Duff and Phelps, which compiled the study.
Chelsea, Tottenham and Arsenal could all charge between £15m and £20m a season, with Liverpool’s value significantly less at £11.1m.
The biggest six teams account for 78 per cent of the total value of Premier League stadium naming rights.
United, the world’s richest club with annual revenue of £581m, have never sold naming rights to Old Trafford, despite being widely regarded as pioneers in maximising the commercial value of their brand.
City and Arsenal have long-term deals with the airlines Etihad and Emirates, while Chelsea and Tottenham are expected to sell naming rights to their proposed new stadiums.
Duff and Phelps believe more leading English teams could follow suit, with the estimated total value of naming rights for Premier League grounds growing by more than 80 per cent to £135.6m since 2013.
“Although the UK hasn’t embraced stadium naming rights as enthusiastically as the United States, its potential to become an important revenue stream is highlighted by these figures,” said Duff and Phelps Head of UK Sports Trevor Birch.
“Clubs are continually looking at ways to generate extra value, and given the gilt-edged international demand for the Premier League TV rights, we may be entering a period where we start to see clubs monetising their stadium rights. This is potentially a huge opportunity for clubs.”
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The rise in the value of Premier League stadium naming rights follows rapid increases in the shirt sponsorship and kit deal markets in recent years.
“Sponsorship demand for the content rights of the top clubs in the Premier League shows no sign of abating,” added Birch, the former chief executive of Chelsea.
“We have seen enormous increases in rights values of the elite clubs over the last couple of years, especially regarding shirt branding and product endorsement.”
Naming rights for West Ham’s London Stadium, which remain unsold, would be worth almost £5m a year, the study says.
Crystal Palace could earn £1.1m for a similar deal involving their Selhurst Park home.