Newcastle United CEO Darren Eales drops hint on Castore kit deal
Newcastle United’s new owners inherited a number of commercial partnerships when they bought the club just over a year ago.
One of them was a "multi-year deal” with Castore, which was signed last year when the sportswear firm replaced Puma as the club’s kit manufacturer. Castore also took over the running of the club store at St James’s Park.
The deal with Castore has been a talking point with supporters since last year’s takeover.
Newcastle’s ambitious new owners are looking to increase commercial revenues, but there are financial fair play implications for clubs buying themselves out of commercial deals.
Darren Eales, the club’s chief executive officer, was last month asked if the club had plans to “replace” Castore. The firm has faced some criticism of its customer service from United fans on social media.
Eales – who worked with Adidas while at Atlanta United – hinted that his immediate priority was an “improved” relationship with Manchester-headquartered Castore, whose co-founder Tom Beahon was at St James’s Park for the club’s win over Chelsea earlier this month.
“I’ve just obviously started with the club, and Castore are our current partners,” Eales told BBC Radio Newcastle. “They’re our partners for, you know, a contractually-committed period.
"They’re a company that I’m going to go and visit. I want to chat with them, and talk with them, and try to be the best partners that we can with them, and vice versa. I’m a great believer that it’s all about having that communication.
"From my perspective, we’ve got Castore as a partner that has shown commitment to the club from before I was here, before ownership was here.
"And, from my perspective, they’ve been great club partners, but we’ll always look, because you can always improve.
"It’ll be ‘how can we help Castore? How can Castore help the club?’. We’re working together, we’re partners. It’s great for both parties the better we can do.”
Meanwhile, United are set to change shirt sponsor at the end of the season. Sports betting and online gaming firm FUN88 have sponsored the club since 2017.
The club have recently announced a number of new commercial deals.