Audi is not easily letting go its stake in the FC Bayern football club. After FC Bayern Munich had announced the change of their car partner starting in “2025 at the latest”, the Ingolstadt-based automaker now seem to be back in the race. As the Automobilwoche and the Donaukurier report, the longtime sponsor of the German record champion wants to outrank and outdo the rival BMW.

Photo: Audi

Audi is in a good position, because the VW subsidiary holds 8.33 percent of the shares of FC Bayern and will only sell them if the price is right. To still be able to outdo BMW, Audi might increase the sponsorship payments, according to Donaukurier. The improved financial terms should therefore apply not only after the current contract ends, but sooner and flush additional money into the account of FC Bayern.

One of the reasons for the new Audi offensive in the duel for Bayern is the billions provision of BMW AG , which was applied in connection with the EU antitrust case, so the financial figures for the first quarter of 2019 were pushed into the red. Against this background, an investment of several hundred million euros for football sponsorship might be difficult to sustain, the Donaukurier speculated.