United doubles global fan base – study
30 May 2012
Barclays Premier League club Manchester United doubled its global fanbase from 2007 to 2011, according to market research company Kantar.
The survey, which gathered responses from 54,000 people in a total of 39 countries, identified United as the favourite team of 659 million followers around the world. Kantar stated that the poll was conducted between June and August 2011 and added that “sophisticated extrapolation techniques also make this the most accurate football follower survey ever produced”.
Richard Arnold, United’s commercial director, said: “Now our games are broadcast to 1.15 billion households globally, to an audience of over four billion a year. Manchester United resonates with followers all over the world, and it’s their passion and support that means year after year we can continue doing what matters most to everyone at the club: playing attacking football and competing for trophies.”
Arnold added: “The growth in our followers since 2007 correlates with what we have seen as we have rolled out our new approach to reaching fans. From the increase in TV viewership from two to four billion last season, to the demand from millions of media subscribers in 72 countries through our media partnerships, we can see that the connections to the club are growing exponentially.” According to the survey, United had twice as many followers as its nearest rival in Asia, FC Barcelona.