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Club football in Brazil booms

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Brazil's top football clubs earned revenue of $1bn in the 2011 season, up nearly 30 per cent from a year earlier, as they gained a greater share of income from television rights.  They have been helped by the rise of pay TV in Brazil with clubs now drawing 26 per cent of their income from TV rights.

This sudden increase in wealth is allowing Brazilian clubs to persuade more top talent to stay at home and to draw some players back from overseas.   A rising middle class is producing rapid growth in telecoms, media and the entertainment industries.

The top-earning Brazilian football club last season was Corinthians, based in Sao Paulo, which earned revenues of R$281m in 2011, up 36 per cent compared with the year before.   Next in line was Sao Paulo with R$225m, up 15 per cent.   Santos, from the port city of the same name, earned R$189m, up 62 per cent.

Sponsorships are becoming more important with Ciaxa Economica Federal, a state-run bank, recently paying a record R$30m for a deal to have its brand on Corinthians' jerseys.   However, Corinthians are still only 25th in rankings of world clubs by total revenue with Sao Paulo ranked 32nd.

Deloitte have noted, 'The World Cup in 2014 and related stadium development could provide a catalyst for growth in attendances and values of already strong commercial deals helping A series clubs better compete with their European rivals to retain the best young talent and bring back established stars.'