Emirates becomes the official airline partner of US-based NBA basketball

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Emirates and the National Basketball Association (NBA) of the United States have announced a multiyear global marketing partnership that names Emirates the ‘Official Global Airline Partner of the NBA’. The collaboration will also see the airline become the inaugural title partner of the NBA Cup, previously named the NBA In-Season Tournament, as well as the first-ever referee jersey sponsor of the NBA.

Dubai-based Emirates will also be promoted through a co-branded Emirates NBA Cup event logo, with co-branded promotion planned across the NBA’s global social media community. The carrier’s brand will also feature on in-arena signage throughout the Emirates NBA Cup Semifinal and Championship games starting in the 2024/25 season.

“We are proud to establish a global marketing partnership with the National Basketball Association to become its Official Global Airline Partner,” said His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Emirates Group Chairman and Chief Executive. “This collaboration will also see Emirates become the league’s first referee jersey patch partner and the inaugural title partner of the NBA Cup.  With basketball’s popularity around the world, we are excited to work with one of the most globally recognized and prestigious professional leagues.”

“The NBA is a valuable addition to our sponsorship portfolio as it allows us to connect with a vast global fanbase, including in the U.S., where the game is an integral part of the country’s sports culture,” he added.

“Emirates is a world-class airline that shares our commitment to engaging fans around the world in new and creative ways,” said NBA Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer Mark Tatum.  “As basketball continues to be recognized as the fastest growing sport globally, this collaboration will showcase the excitement of the NBA to the millions of people who fly Emirates every year.”


The sponsorship allows Emirates to enjoy a presence at other headline NBA events throughout the season. Additionally, Emirates branding will also be visible on the top of the backboard during nationally televised NBA games, beginning with the 2024 NBA All-Star Game.

As part of the wide-ranging collaboration, NBA fans will have the opportunity to watch NBA content on all Emirates flights via the airline’s inflight entertainment system, including long-form documentaries, player profiles, and interviews. 

The marketing partnership will also allow basketball fans to purchase a wide range of co-branded official NBA merchandise later in 2024. The merchandise will be sold at the official Emirates Store at Emirates’ Headquarters in Dubai and online via the company’s website.

Emirates currently serves 12 US airports from its hub in Dubai (DXB). Flights are operated to Boston (BOS), New York-JFK (JFK), Los Angeles (LAX), Houston (IAH), Chicago (ORD), Washington (IAD), Seattle (SEA), Newark (EWR), Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW), San Francisco (SFO), Miami (MIA) and Orlando (MCO).

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