Sony ends Fifa sponsorship ahead of World Cup
Sony has decided not to renew its sponsorship contract with the Federation Internationale de Football Association.
The PlayStation branding will no longer be seen at World Cup events, despite being pitch-side in 2014 and 2010.
Sony has put the move down to expected cost increases in sponsorship, and could be looking to redeem its ailing balance books by chopping the assuredly massive expenditure.
The axed deal could also be a result of ongoing controversy over Fifa and allegations of bribery in the World Cup bids for 2018 and 2022 by Russia and Qatar respectively.
While Fifa did release part of a report clearing the association of any wrong-doing just last month, it’s already been tagged up as erroneous by the lead investigator.
There is also the issue raised by The Guardian last year that pointed to Qatar using slaves to build its World Cup infrastructure.
Qatar has also come under fire as a World Cup venue for its sweltering climate, which many feel is beyond reasonable as a football environment.
Sony’s newly scrapped contract with Fifa began in 2005, and is due to expire any day now, sans renewal.
It’s estimated that the deal is worth somewhere in the region of $277 million, which translates to £176 million sterling.
Samsung has already been tipped as the possible successor to Sony, as Fifa now needs to fill its ‘digital life’ sponsor slot.
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