Formula One: Emirates airline signs Formula One sponsorship deal worth $62m

DUBAI (REUTERS) - Emirates airline sealed a five-year branding deal with Formula One motor racing on Tuesday as it tries to outdo regional rivals for global prominence.

Emirates, owned by the government of Dubai, has to now focused on soccer, sealing shirt sponsorship deals with Italy's AC Milan, French club Paris St Germain and Arsenal football club, whose north London stadium is named after the airline.

Its name will now appear on Formula One circuit bridges, around race course grounds and in team paddocks, starting with the Malaysian Grand Prix in March.

Emirates Chairman Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed al-Maktoum announced the agreement alongside Formula One commercial boss Bernie Ecclestone at a ceremony in Dubai and said the deal had an annual value of more than US$10 million (S$12.5 million).

"Emirates will become the global partner with Formula One beginning in 2013," Sheikh Ahmed said. "We are looking at sponsorship of more sports in the future if we feel this will promote Dubai and promote Emirates."