Celtic merchandising sales were up 50% over last year after Adidas deal

By Euan Davidson

September 22, 2021

If you required further evidence that Celtic fans are keeping the club’s coffers healthy, consider this: the club’s Adidas merchandising alone accounted for a whopping £22.6m in revenue.

Delving back into yesterday’s plc annual results [Celtic FC], it’s abundantly clear that fans are contributing massively, even during a pandemic.

Despite having no games to attend last year, the partnership with Adidas and three excellent 20-21 kits meant supporters were buying from the club in their droves.

It all means means that merchandising is the biggest driver of revenue for the club. And it’s a 50% increase in sales, despite economic turmoil worldwide [The Athletic].

It’s a stark comparison with 2020 [Celtic FC]. Merchandise accounted for £15,042,000 last year. That’s quite a difference, despite having achieved 9IAR and being on the cusp of a Quadruple Treble.

It also far exceeds the £18m in 2019 [Celtic FC], and £17m the year prior.

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There could be a number of factors, here. Firstly, the kits last year held more symbolic importance. Perhaps, they were supposed to represent a year of triumph, a la the Centenary kit or the reproductions of the ’67 kit, for example.

Or, the deal with Adidas, a more recognised brand than New Balance, was the bigger factor. Objectively, Adidas are outperforming Celtic’s old kit manufacturer. They have more sway in international retail, and as such, can surely generate more interest through advertising and international availability.

If trends continue, then Celtic should see even bigger merchandise sales. The introduction of a Japanese outlet will surely add considerably to the total.

Celtic and Adidas deal has made most of supporter enthusiasm

This will come as no shock; people like wearing football shirts. Whether it’s whole kits for kids, or for fans on match day, the famous colours are bound to generate millions of pounds of income.

Especially when the kits look and feel great.

But bringing Adidas on board was always going to help Celtic, there’s no doubt about that.

Photo by Craig Williamson/SNS Group via Getty Images

What’s staggering is that, even during a pandemic, supporters still backed the club with such enthusiasm, despite economic hardship.

That’s unique. Both Real Madrid and Juventus noted a downturn in commercial revenues over the same period, two titans of the game. Crucially, both sponsored by Adidas, too.

For Celtic’s commercial activity to actually improve over the pandemic just illustrates the lasting commitment fans have to their club. That’s something special, and the board really need to understand and value that.

In other news: £6.8m-rated Aaron Hickey flying in Serie A after summer Celtic link