OGC Nice ink Ineos shirt sponsorship as takeover nears

OGC Nice ink Ineos shirt sponsorship as takeover nears
French top-flight soccer club OGC Nice have announced Ineos, the petrochemical company, will be their official shirt sponsor for the 2019/20 season.

The financial terms of the deal have not been released, but it means Nice will have a paid-for shirt sponsor on its shirt this season, following the 2018/19 campaign when it used the space to promote its endowment fund which supports vulnerable children. Before that, it was sponsored by health insurance provider Mutuelles du Soleil.

Ineos made its debut on the club’s kit during their recent pre-season game against Cardiff City.

Additionally, the company will have branding at Nice’s Allianz Riviera stadium, hospitality for games at the venue and additional exposure through the team’s media channels.

The news comes as Jim Ratcliffe, Chairman and Chief Executive of Ineos, nears a reported €100 million (US€111 million) takeover of the club following months of speculation.

Ratcliffe first made an offer for the Ligue 1 side back in February, only for it to be publically rejected by current owner Chien Lee. But after making a revised bid in April, earlier this month it was reported that talks have apparently progressed with a deal now close to completion.

Ineos already has a number of sporting teams and ventures under its banner. Following its purchase of cycling’s Team Sky UCI WorldTour licence earlier this year, Team Ineos enjoyed a very successful Tour de France with the Colombina Egan Bernal winning the grand tour and Geraint Thomas finishing second. Later in 2019, it will also support Eliud Kipchoge’s bid to become the first person to run a marathon in less than two hours.

Ratcliffe already owns Swiss second division team FC Lausanne-Sport and his brother Robert Ratcliffe, who is president of the Swiss club, has been heavily involved in the negotiations to purchase Nice.

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