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On September 6 in New York, FC Barcelona is set to open its new office in the United States, a country where it intends to be there to stay. This new corporate facility will be used for intense activity, and especially commercial activity, that supposes a huge step forward in the international expansion of a club that is already renowned and consolidated as a global phenomenon.
A delegation from FC Barcelona will be there to open the new premises at an event that will be accompanied by a series of institutional, social and charity acts around the city. President Josep Maria Bartomeu and first vice-president Jordi Cardoner, joined by vice-presidents Jordi Mestre and Manel Arroyo, will all be attending in representation of the club at such a momentous occasion.
Ronaldinho in attendance
Former first team player Ronaldo de Assis Moreira, AKA Ronaldinho, and who entranced the Camp Nou with his magic and helped put Barça right back at the top of world soccer, will be the footballing representative of the Club on this trip, and will be joined by women’s team member Line Røddik Hansen.
Objectives: commercial, social and charity expansion
The opening of this new office was a strategic decision made by the president of FC Barcelona and his board. It will imply a complete overhaul of the international scope of the club and will be used as a commercial hub for generating new revenue and implementing the Strategic Plan for the 2016-2021 period, one of the main targets of which is to achieve a turnover of 1,000 million euros by 2021.
This new presence in New York will lead to major commercial activity in the territory, following on from the operations conducted from the office in Hong King that caters for the Asian market, opened in 2014. The club will now be commercially active all around the world on a 24/7 basis.
Social and charity projects will be FC Barcelona among the main focus areas of this new office. In this respect, the target is to increase the presence of the FC Barcelona Foundation in the US, and to activate more supporters clubs.
Club delegation’s agenda in New York
Club delegation’s agenda in New York
The institutional agenda of events that will be attended by the FC Barcelona delegation while they in the United States will be as follows: (New York times, +6 hours with respect to CET).
Tuesday 6 September
12:00. Private lunch with North American businesspeople at Club 21.
13:00. FutbolNet Social Festival at Middle School 129, The Bronx.
17:30. Official inauguration of FC Barcelona office in New York.
(Due to limitations on space, entry to this event is restricted. The Club’s media will be offering to the pictorial and audiovisual material about the event to members of the press.)
18:30. Post-inauguration reception for guests at Mad 46.
Wednesday 7 September
11:00. UNICEF event at the United Nations headquarters.
12:00. Reception for the Official NYC FC Barcelona Penya at Smithfield Hall.
Its own executive team
The office will operate under the institutional supervision of Manel Arroyo, the vice-president responsible for FC Barcelona’s Marketing and Communications Area, and of Francesco Calvo, the club’s Chief Revenue Officer. The US delegation will be managed by Austrian Arno Trabesinger, in the company of two additional executives that the Club will also be sending to New York. One of these is Gerard Guiu, who was previously employed as the head of the presidential cabinet and project director in the Social Area, while the other is Arturo De la Fuente of the Marketing Department. Both gentlemen will be putting plans together for institutional and commercial relations as specified by the new delegation’s business plan.
FC Barcelona in the United States
FC Barcelona has a very close, and also very special, relationship with the USA, where it has a huge following. In commercial terms, the United States is one of the most important strategic targets for FC Barcelona. The Club has such iconic sponsors in the country as Nike, Gatorade, Stanley Black & Decker and Gillette.
As for charity projects, the FC Barcelona Foundation’s agreement with UNICEF is of special importance, and in 2016 will have been running for a full decade. The Club also has strategic alliances with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).
FC Barcelona has penyas (fan clubs) in New York, Washington, Chicago, Miami, San Francisco and Charlotte. It has an FCBEscola soccer school in Florida, and is planning to open a new one in Charlotte from September and is working on a further centre in New York.
In the digital sphere, the USA is second only to Spain in terms of website users, which number around seven and a half million, around 660,000 of whom are in New York City. On social networks, it has almost three and a half million followers of its Facebook account in the US, 275,000 of which are in New York.
Statement by Manel Arroyo
"Two years after opening an office in Hong Kong, the Manhattan office provides us with the structure we need. Now, for the first time and more than ever, we shall be in the two biggest markets. Asia and America, on a permanent basis and with the tools we need to consolidate our position as a global entity.”
"New York will not be the last office that we open. We fervently believe that we need a greater presence in China and the Southern Cone of South America. Brazil is one of our strategic targets and we are sure that these new supports will be decisive for sustaining the Club’s position among the top three sports clubs in the world”.
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