In January 2014, Emirates announced a sponsorship agreement for Rugby World Cup 2015 and 2019, which will be held in England and Japan, respectively.
Emirates also extended its sponsorship of the International Rugby Board’s (IRB) match officials until the end of 2019; this agreement includes for the first time in Rugby World Cup (RWC) history the rights to brand the shirts of match officials on the field of play during the tournament. Since the inception of RWC in 1987, no brand has ever featured on the uniforms of players or match officials.
In terms of the agreement, Emirates will be an official Worldwide Partner of Rugby World Cup 2015 and 2019, as well as the official airline.
RWC 2015 kicks off on September 18 at Twickenham Stadium in London, with hosts England taking on a qualifying national team from the Oceana 1 region. The match schedule will see 25 matches played in dedicated rugby venues, seven in multi-event stadia, and 16 in football venues. This blend of stadia will provide a variety of Rugby World Cup match-day experiences and more than two million opportunities for fans to engage with one of the world’s most recognizable major sports events.
Emirates boasts a rich rugby heritage with its extensive portfolio of top-class rugby sponsorships. It first sponsored the RWC 2007 in France as a Tournament Sponsor, and then became a Worldwide Partner for RWC 2011 in New Zealand.
The airline also sponsors the Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens and the Emirates Airline Glasgow Sevens as well as US Rugby Sevens and XVs teams.