PtG Article 03.01.2013

Emirates Airlines satisfied with FIFA reforms after sponsorship review

Emirates Airlines, an important FIFA sponsor who back in November raised questions regarding FIFA’s reform process, now claim that they are satisfied with FIFA’s efforts to clean up its organisation.

The Dubai-based airline, Emirates Airlines, has voiced concerns about FIFA’s damaged reputation and its potentially negative influence on the Emirates brand. The sponsorship of FIFA is set to expire in 2014, and in November the Airline stated that it considered not renewing the partnership, writes Inside the Games. 

But now, Emirates senior vice-president Boutros Boutros says Sepp Blatter and FIFA’s reformers are doing their best to bring their house in order: 

"What I said before about renewal is that we needed to wait until we had studied whether our brand was damaged because it's a big investment," Boutros told insidethegames. "We have now done a market research test and so far it would seem there is no negative effect on our brand or people's perception of it, whatever FIFA has gone through."

Boutros stated that he is now satisfied that FIFA is becoming more accountable and that it is important to give them a chance to finish what they are doing. 

“In other words”, argues journalist Roger Pielke Jr. “whatever FIFA is doing it is not adversely affecting the Emirates brand, so the company has no need to look into the reform effort any further”. 

In his blog, Pielke argues that this shows why corporate sponsors will never be the ones leading reform of sports governance. 

Read the article on Inside the Games

Read Roger Pielke Jr.’s comment "Why Sponsors Will Not Lead FIFA Reform"