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Real Madrid Lose $440 Million Sponsorship Battle With Abu Dhabi Fund

  • 2 min read

Spanish soccer’s Real Madrid have lost a $440 million court battle with Abu Dhabi sovereign investor Mubadala (MUDEV.UL) over the proposed sponsorship of its stadium in Madrid, sources with knowledge of the case told Reuters.

Real Madrid had claimed 400 million euros ($440 million) from Mubadala because it said the Abu Dhabi sovereign investor failed to honour a sponsorship deal under which it would acquire rights to name the Santiago Bernabeu stadium for 20 years.

“The arbitral tribunal constituted under the rules of the Court of International Trade in Paris has ruled in favour of (Mubadala),” the source told Reuters.

In 2014, Real agreed a strategic partnership with Abu Dhabi fund International Petroleum Investment Co (IPIC), now Mubadala, to help finance a planned stadium overhaul.

The project was meant to add a striking new roof and exterior to the current structure and include a hotel and a shopping centre, to help the world’s richest club by income boost its revenue.

However, in 2015, a Madrid court halted the original modification of the stadium.

A later plan, approved by Madrid city council in 2017, was different to the one agreed by the soccer club and Mubadala.

The court ruled the sponsorship contract had expired by the time the second expansion was agreed in 2017.

Allen & Overy y GBS Disputes advised IPIC Mubadala and Alonso & Díez-Hochleitner Abogados y Pérez-Llorca advised Real Madrid

Mudabala’s holdings include Spanish energy firm Compania Espanola de Petroleos (CPF.GQ).