Liverpool’s proposed new kit deal with Nike would only guarantee the club £30million-a-year, according to papers that have been filed ahead of a High Court hearing between the Reds and current kit supplier New Balance.
KOPTALK reported earlier this week that New Balance – who currently pay the Reds £45m-a-year under their existing arrangement – were trying to block the Nike deal by taking legal proceedings against the Reds. New Balance claim that they have the right to match Nike’s offer due to a ‘matching clause’ in their agreement with the Reds but Anfield executives insist this isn’t the case.
It has now emerged that the new deal with Nike would only guarantee Liverpool £30m-a-year but that further royalties linked to distribution and promotion would see additional revenues banked. Liverpool are confident that such a deal would work for them with stars such as Serena Williams, LeBron James and Drake helping promote the brand globally. New Balance say they can match Nike’s terms and that they subsequently must be accepted due to the ‘matching clause’.
An independent review into New Balance by Deloitte which was commissioned by the Reds, determined that Nike could provide distribution through “6000 global doors”, double that of New Balance and that a deal with Nike would “super charge distribution in a way challenger brands are not able to do.”
A High Court judge will decide next month who Liverpool’s kit provider will be from the start of the 2020-21 season. As things currently stand, New Balance have already designed 3 new kits for next season despite the legal wrangle.
New Balance recently issued a statement which read: “As a long standing and committed sponsor, we are keen to continue our strong partnership with Liverpool Football Club and renew our agreement in 2020. In line with our current contract, we have matched the offer made by Nike.
“As part of the contract renewal process, LFC has called into question elements of the agreement and as such we are asking the courts for clarity on this case. Both we and the club are keen to resolve any contractual challenges as quickly as possible and have agreed to an expedited process in the courts.
“New Balance is eager and confident to maintain its sponsorship of Liverpool Football Club and we look forward to continuing our record of success as LFC’s playing kit provider.”
A Liverpool spokesman responded by saying: “We can confirm that our kit supplier, New Balance, has commenced a legal dispute against the club. We will not be making any further comment during these legal proceedings.”
A three-day trial will be heard in the High Court from October 18th.
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