Emirates Group to curtail Australia sporting partnerships

    Emirates Group divisional senior VP corporate communications marketing & brand Boutros Boutros said the company will end its decade long partnership with the Australian Open (Golf) and may withdraw from Victoria‘s Spring Racing Carnival altogether, as it examines the value of its key Australian sponsorship arrangements in 2018 and beyond (The Australian, 28-Dec-2017). He noted that the airline had built such strong brand awareness in Australia, it no longer needed the same number of dedicated sponsorships here. Mr Boutros said: “When we first came, nobody had heard of Emirates… Definitely, our research says our brand recognition in Australia is now very high. [The sponsorships] are no longer necessary”. Instead, Emirates plans to rely more on sporting partnerships with global exposure, and less on those catering to specific ­markets. On its sponsorship of the Australian Open, Mr Boutros said: “We don’t need it anymore… If I have a deal with the (European) PGA, why do I need another side deal?”. Mr Boutros said Emirates could not simply “keep spending and spending” on hundreds of sponsorships around the globe. “You need to be smart”, he said. “When you look at Emirates’ sponsorships, we cover the globe. Every Australian who follows golf will continue seeing Emirates around the world. Same with horse racing. Same with soccer. At the end of the day, I have a budget every year. You have to follow your research and outcome”.