Dial-a-Phone secures £2m Premier sponsorship deal

Dial-a-Phone, the Internet mobile phone retailer, has signed a three-year deal to become Middlesbrough's Football Club's shirt sponsor.

The club - which finished 12th in the Premiership last season - and the sponsor both refused to divulge the details of the contract, but insiders believe it is worth about £2m, and its value partly depends on the success of the club. Dial-a-Phone will also create special offers for fans, which will be promoted on the club's website.

The news ends a lengthy search by the club after its previous sponsor, BT Cellnet, announced it would not be renewing its contract with the club under its new name, O2. O2 now sponsors Arsenal. Middlesbrough's stadium, which was also sponsored by BT Cellnet, has dropped the company's name.

Dial-a-Phone joint founder Jonathan Beck says his company decided to enter the sponsorship market after becoming aware that a number of clubs lacked sponsors for the forthcoming season. The deal was negotiated by IMG.

Dial-a-Phone began trading in 1995, and is majority owned by its founders, Beck and Richard Frank. The company, which has over 600 employees, claims to have supplied mobile phones to more than 1 million customers since its launch.

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