Kylian Mbappe of France reveals a shirt with a picture of an uncle who recently passed away as he celebrates after scoring the 3-0 goal during the international friendly soccer match between France and Luxembourg, Metz, France, 05 June 2024. EFE-EPA/CHRISTOPHER NEUNDORF



Paris, June 8 (EFE).-By Antonio Torres del Cerro

Embodying “French-style-luxury,” exclusivity, and “savoir-faire,” Kylian Mbappe, who was recently signed by Real Madrid, values sponsors’ quality more than quantity.

Three of them (Dior, Rimowa, and Hublot) belong to the LVMH luxury group.

“Mbappe has a clear preference for the exclusive and the luxurious. And Real Madrid represents luxury in the world of football,” sports marketing expert Vincent Chaudel told EFE.

The haute couture and ready-to-wear brand Dior, the high-end suitcase brand Rimowa and Hublot watches respond to the image of “French-style luxury” with which the French striker wants to be associated.

When Dior began collaborating with the PSG squad first, Mbappe also lent his image to the “Sauvage” perfume brand.

Along with the LVMH brands, considered the largest exclusive products group in the world, led by magnate Bernard Arnault, Madrid’s new marquee signing has also been linked to Nike since 2006 and American sunglasses brand Oakley.

“It is clear that his strategy is one of quality over quantity. He prefers fewer contracts, but better-remunerated ones,” added the analyst, comparing it with the 70 sponsors that Mbappe’s former teammate at PSG Neymar has.

Mbappe, who at 25 is one of the most sought-after players at the moment, still earns less from marketing than the two most prominent footballers of the 21st century, Leo Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Winning his first Ballon d’Or, which Messi won eight times and Cristiano won five, could change that dynamic.

Currently, it is estimated that Mbappe earns between $25 and $30 million annually from sponsorships.

The distribution of image rights was precisely one of the issues that needed to be resolved before his Real Madrid agreement could be completed.

Florentino Perez ended up agreeing to a 30 percent distribution for the club and 70 percent for the footballer, according to ‘L’Équipe’.

It was unbecoming of a club that has the habit of sharing 50-50 with players of the Frenchman’s stature.

Another plus for the brands is the life story of Mbappe.

Born in the bedroom town of Bondy, in the impoverished corner of Seine-Saint-Denis, he embodies the mixture of a good part of France with Algerian mother Fayza Lamari and Cameroonian father Wilfried. “That helps his internationalization,” Chaudel estimated.

Adidas vs Nike

The arrival of Mbappe in Madrid once again placed two major sports brands—Adidas and Nike — face-to-face.

The French striker represents the American company Nike, while Real Madrid is with the German company Adidas.

“He can be seen in the mixed zone with official Adidas equipment, but with a Nike cap,” said Chaudel.

“Nothing extraordinary,” he noted, “because something similar already happened with Messi (Adidas) during his stay in Barcelona (Nike).”

According to the analyst, this curious association ends up benefiting both brands.

The sports marketing specialist does not foresee Mbappe confronting Real Madrid as he did with the French team.

He stood against the French team because he did not want to give his image to certain types of brands, such as online betting houses and fast food.

If French fans regret his absence, so does the French treasury.

According to French media accounts, Mbappe left €261 million ($284.40 million) in the French public coffers in taxes during the seven years of his involvement with PSG, between 2017 and 2024. EFE


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