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UK Online Casino Deal Falls Through

Manchester United has been accused of “double dealing” after sponsorship talks between the football club and online casino firm Mansion broke down last week. The online casino operator had already confirmed media reports that it was about to sign a sponsorship deal with the club worth 70 million pounds. David Kinsman, who was acting on behalf of the online casino firm as its chief negotiator, stated that the two parties had reached a deal. However days later Manchester United called off talks in order to discuss sponsorship opportunities with several other companies.

The football club has denied the online casino firm’s claims, stating that they have not entered into exclusive talks with any firm. A statement from the club goes on to say that while it understands Mansion’s disappointment at failing to secure the deal, no promises were made. The club’s management said that its priority was to source the most appropriate deal for Manchester United. However it would not confirm or deny holding talks with other online casino operators. In response, David Kinsman reports that the online casino firm had been “flabberghasted” by the football club’s decision.

According to Kinsman, the two parties had discussed along with sponsorship the idea of opening a joint gaming venture. Manchester United had reportedly also raised the option of purchasing a 20 percent stake in the online casino firm in the future. The club is currently looking for a new sponsor to replace Vodafone, whose sponsorship contract concludes at the end of the 2006 season. Mansion meanwhile will be seeking a new sponsorship deal in order to boost its publicity amongst online casino fans.

OCA News Editor

Jenny McKinnley is OCA’s financial correspondent. After spending years on the trading floor in both NY and London, she offers insight from the inside out on world financial news and events.