Money Matter$

Ambitious Manchester City expansion plans thwarted by number crunchers

No one knows who they are, say advertising agency

Garry Cook

Sounding more and more like a supervillain with every day that passes, Manchester City executive chairman Garry Cook (pictured above, probably thinking about money) this week revealed plans to turn the club into the ‘Virgin of Asia and the world’ – he expects to City-branded cars, restaurants, energy drinks and motorcycle helmets in the coming years.

His ambitious plans, however, may be thwarted on two counts: firstly, with the exception of the Eastlands faithful, no football fan in the world will eat a City burger, put City smoke alarms in their house or brush with City toothpaste. Secondly, according to the BBDO advertising agency, City are not among Europe’s top 25 most recognisable brands. In fact, in terms of mid- and long-term advertising revenue potential, they are beaten by Lille, Stuttgart and Benfica.

Here are the top 25, where the bracketed figure represents brand value:

Real Madrid ($1.498B)
FC Barcelona ($1.336B)
Manchester United ($1.299B)
Chelsea ($1.167B)
AC Milan ($1.161B)
Bayern Munich ($1.025B)
Inter Milan ($1.008B)
Arsenal ($1.003B)
Juventus ($999M)
Liverpool ($909M)
Olympique Lyon ($638M)
AS Rome ($621M)
Schalke 04 ($614M)
Ajax Amsterdam ($519M)
Glasgow Rangers ($468M)
Valencia ($450M)
Benfica ($448M)
Celtic ($444M)
VfB Stuttgart ($406M)
Werder Bremen ($388M)
FC Porto ($359M)
PSV Eindhoven ($341M)
Sevilla ($331M)
Villarreal ($330M)
OSC Lille ($290M)

It’s a crazy idea, but perhaps Mr Cook should concentrate on making the team successful before ensuring that Chinese children take Manchester City pencil cases to school?

5 responses so far
  • allan // September 12, 2008 at 11:47 am

    How did Chelsea get there? Wer they well known before all the money flowed in and brought success. I suppose Manchester City are thinking along those lines. Not so fanciful perhaps.

  • Honest Abe // September 12, 2008 at 12:48 pm

    Chelsea being so high up is quite surprizing. I must admit I never would have thought they’d be bigger than A.C. Milan.

    But using them as a model for Man City probably won’t work.

    Chelsea had a pretty good team, and all the money spent on them was just the icing on top of the cake.

    Man City don’t have that cake… or sponge… they’re more like bread at the moment.

  • frankie // September 12, 2008 at 1:46 pm

    really how did chelsea get there considering the fact that well the jersey looks like what my mechanic uses

  • andrew // September 12, 2008 at 5:38 pm

    Asia is a gigantic market, and a fairly loyal one. If they really push the city brand and sign the big players the oil money could easily create a huge huge market for city. The fact remains though that until they are a top 4 club playing champions league football they won’t be in the top. As someone who lives in the U.S. I know that the only brands they sell are top clubs.

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