PSG snapped Messi up on a free transfer following his departure from Barcelona in the summer, tying the Argentine down to a two-season deal with the option of an extra year.
The capture of the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner was perceived by many to be the biggest coup of the last transfer window, but what effect has he had on PSG’s revenue stream so far?
GOAL is here with everything you need to know.
PSG have sold almost one million Messi-printed jerseys to date in 2022-21, GOAL can confirm.
The club’s sponsorship Director Marc Armstrong says the 34-year-old’s arrival led to record-breaking overall shirt sales for the year and believes they would have been even higher had it not been for the manufacturing delays caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“He’s a great asset. From a commercial point of view, the impact is incredible,” Armstrong told GOAL.
“We believe that last year we sold more shirts than any other club, and this year will be even better. It’s definitely the best jersey launch in terms of sales with at least a 30-40% increase in demand.
“The demand has been enormous. If we could produce more, we would sell even more.”
Armstrong also revealed sponsorship offers began flooding in for PSG as soon as Messi’s departure from Barca was confirmed.
The French giants moved quickly to win the race for the Argentine international’s signature and are now reaping the rewards as external companies also seek to profit on his popularity.
Partnerships have been agreed with brands such as Autohero, Crypto.com, Smart Good Things and Gorillas as PSG have been able to rake in millions in additional revenue.
“There has been an impact and the partners are committed to our price. Previously, demand was already strong, but now it is greater than ever,” Armstrong added.
“We immediately had a significant increase in offers and even before he officially signed in Paris, there were a lot of requests.
“We have really felt an impact in all of our business areas: from sponsorship and merchandising to hospitality and ticketing.”
Has PSG’s social media following increased?
PSG’s online presence has grown exponentially with Messi on their books, with 20 million subscribers gained across all of their social media platforms in the first week after his signing alone.
GOAL understands that number has increased by one million every month since, and Armstrong says another club record fell on the day he was officially confirmed as a PSG player.
“Our community is at an all-time high, with 150 million social media fans,” he said. “We had the highest engagement rate in the history of player announcements, all club and player accounts combined.”
Messi, who has recorded six goals and five assists in his first 15 appearances for PSG, has also had a positive effect on the club’s ticket sales.
Armstrong admits that the club are struggling to keep up with demand as they continue to sell out every fixture well in advance, with price hikes now inevitable in the hospitality sector.
However, PSG’s sponsorship chief has promised that normal tickets will remain affordable for the general public regardless of how much registration levels increase
“There is a huge demand that we, unfortunately, cannot fully meet at the moment, so interest in the secondary market is growing as you would expect,” said Armstrong.
“This is one of the many elements that we will be considering in the pricing strategy and in all of our ongoing renewal discussions. It would not be surprising if prices go up.
“This is a point on which we are working. In the general public areas of the stadium, we are nevertheless committed to keeping prices affordable to allow all our fans to enjoy the Paris Saint-Germain experience.”