Barclays boss hits out at LED stadium boards

Premier League sponsor Barclays has hit out at moving electronic advertising boards at Premiership football grounds as “irritating” and “desperately distracting”.

The LED perimeter boards were installed at Manchester United’s Old Trafford ground this summer at a cost of &2.5m, and are being considered for use in the new Wembley stadium and Arsenal’s planned new home in Ashburton Grove.

Barclays sponsorship director Nic Gault, who oversaw the &57m renewal of the Premier League deal, says that “there will be a real risk that sponsors will alienate fans, or at least achieve a really negative response by using the boards.”

He adds: “I think they tend to irritate. Our real concern is about there being too much movement. I hope that clubs do not take up the technology, to be honest, as it could detract from the football on the pitch. Some of these things are desperately distracting.”

Barclays has already used the boards during the first four games of the season, with Manchester United sponsors Vodafone and Nike. Gault says the company is evaluating the effectiveness of the boards but it is too early to know the results.

The LED board system has caused controversy in the past, when a BBC cameraman complained that boards showing a Mini “driving” around an England versus Turkey match were distracting.

Latest from Marketing Week

NOT REGISTERED? IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email subscriptions@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here