Spanish LaLiga football club Barcelona is reportedly said to be seriously considering a complex offer from the Grifols family behind the pharmaceuticals company of the same name for the naming rights to its Camp Nou stadium.
Grifols has long been connected to the naming rights, as Barcelona seeks to generate revenue to aid the redevelopment of the Camp Nou under the wider Espai Barça masterplan. The El Economista newspaper said that while Grifols has previously denied its involvement, sources indicate that the offer originates from the Grifols family and directors of the company via Scranton Enterprises, an investment vehicle that operates from the Netherlands.
The Grifols will reportedly look to buy the naming rights through Scranton and subsequently acquire a new partner. Barcelona is said to be seeking around €300m (£269.8m/$345.9m) for a naming-rights contract ranging between 15 and 20 years.
El Economista said Barcelona requires €300m up front, adding that the Grifols offer ties in with this vision, although Scranton is reportedly seeking a deal running longer than 20 years. The name of the brand attached to the Camp Nou would also rotate during the contract, with Barcelona having the final veto over the identity of its home.
The El Confidencial newspaper added that Barcelona has agreed to “thoroughly analyse” the offer, which would release funds allowing major work on the Camp Nou to start at the end of this season.
The club’s legal advisors have reportedly recommended that Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu end talks owing to conflict of interest fears concerning sublicensing of the naming rights. However, the Barcelona president is said to be continuing work on the agreement.
It was reported last month that Barcelona had been forced to shift the planned opening date for the new-look Camp Nou. Spanish radio broadcaster Cadena SER said a board of directors meeting outlined a new calendar of works under the Espai Barça project.
A major renovation of Barcelona’s stadium is at the heart of Espai Barça, which also includes the development of a new Palau Blaugrana arena, the opening of Barça Campus and the 6,000-seat Estadi Johan Cruyff.
Barcelona’s current official information on the Camp Nou plan outlines a projected opening date of May 2022. However, Cadena SER said this has now slipped to the summer of 2023, adding that while the main work will be complete in 2022, the final touches will not be added until a year later.
Initial work on the €360m Camp Nou renovation, which will see the stadium have a seating capacity of around 105,000 once finished, commenced in the summer.
Image: FC Barcelona