European Soccer Clubs Suspend Partnership with Russian Bookmaker
Published: April 8, 2022
Three leading European soccer clubs have ended their partnership deals with the renowned Russian bookmaker Fonbet.
Real Madrid, AC Milan, and Paris Saint-Germain suspended their agreements because of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. All three clubs inked a deal with the bookmaker last year.
According to available information, the move aims to show support for Ukraine and solidarity with its people.
Real Madrid signed a partnership agreement with Fonbet in early 2021. Following the recent news, Fonbet won’t offer any bonuses and promotions that involve the famous Spanish side.
AC Milan also decided to cut its ties with the sports betting brand. The Italian soccer team inked a deal with Fonbet in 2020, becoming the operator’s official betting partner in Russia.
The brand won’t be visible during AC Milan’s home games in Serie A, while all mentions of Fonbet have been removed from the official website and the club’s mobile app.
Paris Saint-Germain partnered with Fonbet around the same time, with their cooperation scheduled to last until 2023. The operator offered higher match odds and a number of promotions that featured the French champions.
In a press statement, the club explained that the current situation in Ukraine had prompted Paris Saint-Germain to reconsider doing business with the Russian sports betting company. That’s why the club decided to suspend the partnership deal until the end of the season.
Fonbet is a Russian sports betting operator founded in 1994 by Anatoly Machulsky. The chess grandmaster was at the company’s helm until 2013 but was sentenced to a suspended prison term for offering online gambling.
Maxim Kiryukhin took over and helped Fonbet become the largest bookmaker in Russia, with more than 1,000 betting shops.
The online casino is also the official sponsor of the Russian national soccer team, the Continental Hockey League, and the Moscow-based CSKA soccer club.