Manchester City unveil deal with Israeli web firm

By Josh Jackman, February 19, 2016
A still from the video, featuring England winger Raheem Sterling

A still from the video, featuring England winger Raheem Sterling

Arab-owned football club Manchester City have announced a partnership with an Israeli company.

The club, bought by United Arab Emirates deputy prime minister Sheikh Mansour in 2008, will collaborate with Tel Aviv-based firm Wix.com.

Wix will design the former Premier League champions’ website and content on social media networks, and the Wix brand will appear around the Etihad Stadium during all domestic league and cup matches.

The Israeli web development experts will also work for New York City FC and Melbourne City FC, which are owned by Man City’s parent company City Football Group (CFG).

To celebrate the partnership, the two companies have made a video in which first-team players Raheem Sterling, Pablo Zabaleta, Fernandinho and Nicolas Otamendi create a club chants site while football pundit Chris Kamara commentates.

Wix chief marketing officer Omer Shai said following a successful advertising spot during the Super Bowl, the company had been “looking to expand to the most popular sport in the world – football.

“The partnership with CFG is a natural one as our two brands share values and vision, and we’re confident it will boost the Wix brand amongst the massive fan bases of all three clubs.”

Omar Berrada, the commercial director for City’s marketing arm, said the club was “excited” to start working with Wix, who he said “offers a unique website design and hosting platform”.

He added that the partnership would “introduce our clubs’ global fan bases to an easily accessible online tool,” and allow fans to “get closer than ever to all the on-the-pitch and behind-the-scenes action”.

Man City, who are also part-owned by the Chinese government, saw their annual revenue rise to £352m in 2015, making a profit for the first time since the sheikh took over the club. Wix is worth £100m.

Last updated: 3:13pm, February 19 2016