Newcastle owner Mike Ashley has finally reached an agreement with Glasgow Rangers FC, for his company Sports Direct to have the naming rights to Ibrox.
Mike Ashley - agreed to naming rights for Ibrox
Rangers Chief Executive Charles Green is attempting to have the naming rights in place before the start of next season, and he thinks the Rangers supporters are now more supportive of the naming change than they were earlier in the season, when it was first brought up.
This is what Green told STV:
“‘We have now decided that Sports Direct will be the partner for stadium naming.” “We had representatives from Sports Direct up for a fans’ forum a couple of weeks ago. We also had Derek Llambias of Newcastle United sharing his experience of how that helped his club.”
‘We are now into the stage where we are doing some layouts, some pictorials of how it might look and we’ll stick those on the website shortly so the fans can see what’s being proposed.” ‘We have had good engagement from the fans on this.”
“I think it was always an issue for fans but I think the fans accept now that this is something that we have to do. Almost all of the big stadia have been named now.”
We’re not sure exactly what Derek LLambias said about how the naming rights helped Newcastle - other than Wonga paid Newcastle to have the St. James’ Park name (rightly) restored to the famous stadium recently.
Mike Ashley also owns something less than 10% of Rangers FC, and he will be banking on the value of Rangers FC rising as they move through the leagues and back to the Scottish Premier League.
Ranger’s Ibrox Stadium
Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct agreed to become Rangers’ merchandising partner several months ago – and proof that Rangers are (not surprisingly) finding life in the Scottish fourth tier difficult, is that they announced a loss of £7M in interim results through December 31st last year, and that’s on revenues of only £9.5M, with operating expenses of £16.6M.
So it’s hardly surprising that Charles Green is looking to boost revenues in any way he can.
In contrast, Newcastle United’s last financial figures for the financial year through the end of last June had revenues of close to £100M – although profits have not been announced as yet, so Rangers have taken an enormous hit in their revenues, and it’s not surprising they are currently making a loss.
You can also reach Ed at firstname.lastname@example.org