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Manchester United seeks to cash in as sponsor DHL is sent packing

updated 6:54 AM EDT, Fri October 26, 2012
Manchester United's $64 million training kit sponsorship deal with DHL was agreed in 2010.
Manchester United's $64 million training kit sponsorship deal with DHL was agreed in 2010.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Manchester United buys out DHL from training kit sponsorship package
  • EPL club hopes to make more money by agreeing an alternative deal
  • United signed a world-record $559 million sponsorship deal with GM in July
  • The club has recently signed partnerships with Bakcell and Kagome

(CNN) -- Having landed a world-record shirt sponsorship deal with General Motors in July, soccer team Manchester United is looking to cash in once more after buying out training kit partner DHL.

The English Premier League club signed a $559 million agreement with GM to have the Chevrolet logo on its shirts for seven years from 2014 onwards.

And, despite signing a $64 million training kit deal with logistics firm DHL in 2010, the Glazer family-owned team has already set its sights on securing a more lucrative endorsement.

"We have successfully negotiated an early buyout of our training kit agreement with DHL effective 30 June 2013," read a statement from one of the world's richest clubs, which has won the English league title a record 19 times and been crowned champion of Europe on three occasions.

Manchester United is the most valuable brand in football according to a report by independent consultancy Brand Finance. The global appeal and on-field success of the 19-time English champions has helped establish a brand worth an estimated $853 million. Manchester United is the most valuable brand in football according to a report by independent consultancy Brand Finance. The global appeal and on-field success of the 19-time English champions has helped establish a brand worth an estimated $853 million.
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"The significantly increased value of agreements concluded since entering into this agreement, such as our recent $559 million world-record shirt sponsorship with General Motors, leads us to believe that there should be strategic opportunities to further optimize the value of these rights."

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United has already announced two lucrative partnerships this month. First it entered into a three-year arrangement with Azerbaijani telecommunications company Bakcell, which became the club's first broadcast partner in the country.

Then food and beverage company Kagome became United's official soft drinks partner in Japan.

Despite incurring huge debts when the Glazers bought the club in 2005, United has remained one of the most profitable teams on the planet.

For the tax year ending June 30 2012, United's total income was £320.3 million ($516.3 million). Meanwhile, Forbes Magazine ranked Alex Ferguson's side as the most valuable in world sport, with a brand worth an estimated $2.23 billion.

On the pitch, Ferguson will be without Shinji Kagawa for one month after it was announced the Japanese playmaker aggravated a knee injury during Tuesday's European Champions League victory over Braga.

"Kagawa is out for three to four weeks with a knee injury," Ferguson told a press conference ahead of Sunday's match with EPL leaders Chelsea. "Playing on Tuesday didn't help. It is disappointing."

Kagawa joined United from German champions Borussia Dortmund in June and has so far scored two goals for the club.

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