EDITORIAL: Premier League deal is CSR

Barclaycard's pounds 48m sponsorship deal of the FA Premier League

is a coup. While the card firm is autonomous within the Barclays group,

it shares shelf space in the public mind. Last year's branch closures,

the chaotic AGM and the 'Big' ad fiasco are history - even at the time

they were not widely linked to the card. But Barclaycard PROs admit they

were tarred with same brush as their retail chums. This deal promises a

new era.

The final aspect of the agreement - a link-up with the British Tourist

Authority (BTA) - appears to entrench corporate responsibility as a

major group motive. The BTA struggles to get its message out in the face

of global foot-and-mouth coverage. A deal with the league, which links

it to the card's 22 million outlets in 200 countries, heralds a

much-needed boost for UK tourism.

It shows, as Barclaycard admits, that when helping stakeholders

dovetails with a business argument, the case for CSR becomes

unanswerable. There should be more such deals.

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