After Adidas 'snub' five companies who Arsenal should pursue

Li Ning

Even if just to compete with Nike and up the value of a new deal Arsenal need rivals for their kit sponsorship. Which five companies could be interested in the club?

Arsenal were dealt a blow this weekend when it was reportedly revealed that German company adidas would not be going into any bidding war with Nike for the kit rights at Arsenal FC.

In recent years the club have seen their kit deal be considerably usurped by the likes of local rivals Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United seeking a £1bn deal with Nike.

Regardless of that the £303 million deal Nike currently have with United far usurps the £55 million arrangement with Arsenal and it appears that in their 18-year-partnership the club have become too comfortable with the American brand and need to give them competition.

Nike will not want to lose Arsenal. The Nike Store in London uses Arsenal as one of its main selling points and with none of the other London sides currently with Nike, and West Ham expected to sign on with adidas after their links with the Olympic Stadium, the company will not want to lose out on the London market.

But Arsenal still need leverage to get a deal worthy of their standing.

So who should Arsenal turn to?

Here are five potential brands worth bargaining with…

Li-Ning (China)

China is the biggest growing market in the world and Li-Ning is one of its biggest sports brands. They have recently made moves into the American market by tying down NBA star Dwayne Wade to an official sponsorship deal but so far football has not been explored.

They currently only sponsor La Liga side Celta Vigo but after the Spanish subsidiary of the company went bust the Galician side will be sponsored by adidas from next season.

Staying in the European market could hinge on a deal with Arsenal and with big money to be made in the Far East this could be a profitable deal in of itself.

X-Tep (China)

A deal with Birmingham City fell through in 2012 so this Chinese company is also looking to expand into the UK sportswear market.

Currently they only sponsor Villarreal of Spain and for all the same reasons as Li-Ning this could be a profitable deal for Arsenal to investigate.

Puma (Germany)

So they didn’t get adidas which was formed by Adolf Dassler in 1948 so maybe go with Puma; formed by his estranged brother Rudolf.

The English market took a hit when Under Armour took over from Spurs so Puma going in for Arsenal could be massive business for the club.

Arsenal also have a huge following in the African market where Puma have a very strong brand recognition.

What Manchester United fan and Puma poster-boy Usain Bolt would say about is another thing entirely.

Skins (Australia)

The compression sportswear manufacturer has so far only delved into the Rugby market in regards to sponsorship. If they wanted to compete with Under Armour in North London a big deal with Arsenal could help.

New Balance (USA)

The NB brand is well recognised in the UK and has strong revenue streams.

Could they make a breakthrough into the football market by offering Arsenal a deal they can’t refuse?

Who would you like to sponsor Arsenal next season?

image: © gilbert928

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