This is the English Premiership giants club’s third lucrative agreement in the space of a week.
The deal has been driven by Manchester United’s London-based commercial operation, which has struck sponsorship and partnership agreements worth in excess of R1.5-billion since opening for business in 2008.
With the club’s R8-billion debt requiring huge interest repayments every year, United’s owners, the Glazer family, are determined to exploit the strength of the club’s brand across the globe and today’s deal with MTN is the latest ‘territory-specific’ package, with more expected in the coming weeks and months.
“With one of the most diverse support bases in world football, South Africans football fans from all walks of life can identify with Manchester United,” says a Man U statement released today.
“By partnering with the Old Trafford-based club, MTN is providing customers and fans alike with a front-row seat to world club football.
“Given the longevity of the contract and the powerful brand that is Manchester United, in many ways from a revenue point of view, we see this partnership to be as big as our involvement with the Fifa World Cup, as they both have international appeal and massive global audiences.”
United have undertaken two pre-season tours of South Africa in recent seasons, playing games in Cape Town, Durban and Pretoria.
Earlier this week the club announced high-profile partnerships with Telekom Malaysia and Turkish Airlines.