Bayern Munich has postponed its decision to sponsor Qatar until 2023

Bayern Munich has postponed its decision to sponsor Qatar until 2023

BERLIN (AP) — Bayern Munich will not decide whether to extend its controversial sponsorship deal with Qatar Airways until next year.

“We will continue to discuss the issue in depth after the World Cup and find a solution for FC Bayern,” chief executive Oliver Kahn told the club’s 1,501 members at Bayern’s annual general meeting on Saturday.

Kahn said he respected fans’ concerns about Bayern’s lucrative arrangement with Qatar Airways, although many supporters say it harms the club’s reputation due to human rights abuses in the Persian Gulf nation.

But Bayern’s chief executive also defended the sponsorship, which will continue until the end of the current season.

Khan said, progress has been made in the field of labor and human rights in Qatar. “No one has suggested that Qatar is a country that meets European standards. But if you want to change and start something, you have to meet people, talk to them and get ideas instead of pushing them away. Exchange.

Bayern president Herbert Heiner has previously apologized to club members for mistakes he said ended last year during a general meeting. Chaotic scenes When members shouted at club managers and refused to discuss sponsorship arrangements with Qatar.

“It wasn’t like we knew and wanted to see FC Bayern,” said Heiner. “And I also made the mistake of chairing the meeting that evening. I’d like to formally apologize once again today.

Heiner was praised for his apology, however, when he was again questioned by club member Michael Ott about the Qatar sponsorship, and whether Bayern intended to continue the partnership.

“I can’t answer yes or no today,” Hanner said.

At last year’s AGM, Ott tried to call for a vote on Bayern’s sponsorship deals with Qatar, but was not allowed by the club, one of the reasons for the upset.

Ott was later invited to a Panel discussion Hosted by the club in July to discuss their arrangements with Qatar.

Heiner was re-elected club president for another three-year term on Saturday. The 68-year-old former Adidas boss was the only candidate. Vice Presidents Dieter Meyer and Walter Mannix were also re-elected.

Also, Byrne reported another year of strong financial growth despite the lingering effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Bavarian powerhouse announced a turnover of 665.7 million euros ($647 million) for the 2021-22 season, while pre-tax profit increased by 5 million euros to 17.1 million euros.

“Hardly any other top European club has been able to report profits as consistently as FC Bayern despite the pandemic over the past three years.” “It’s something but of course an issue and essentially related to FC Bayern’s DNA, where we never spend more than we earn.”

Bayern earned 224.2 million euros from sponsorship and marketing, while another part of the income (159.5 million euros) came from match operations, which were helped by the easing of restrictions against the coronavirus last year.

Player transfers brought in 12.1 million euros, while commercials brought in another 93.6 million euros.

Wages were the biggest expense at 324.1 million for all employees, including players, team officials and other club employees, while operating expenses were 169.8 million euros.

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