How Sponsorships Help Leagues – and Clubs – Reduce Costs and Become Sustainable Without Diminishing Their Independence

How Sponsorships Help Leagues – and Clubs – Reduce Costs and Become Sustainable Without Diminishing Their Independence

By NISA Nation Staff

Sports is one of the few mediums that connects people around the world. But perhaps, what truly connects people across various walks of life are the stories and journeys that sports provide. In fact, one of the key components which allow sport to connect with people is sponsorship. Sponsorship provides sport leagues and clubs with a bigger platform, additional resources, sustainability, and cost reductions. Furthermore, in the wide world of soccer, sponsors have shaped the identity of soccer clubs, whether it is Samsung on Chelsea F.C.’s jerseys in the mid-2000’s, Fly Emirates sponsoring multiple professional soccer clubs, or the first jersey sponsorship deal in the early 1970’s with Eintracht Braunschweig. Sponsorship helps sport leagues and clubs elevate their brand, connect with people all over the globe, and create a unique identity in sport and business.

To further emphasize how sponsorship helps leagues and clubs become sustainable and reduce costs, it is important to note how integral sponsorship has become in sport business. In the 21st century, regardless of the sport, leagues and clubs have specific sponsors which elevate and advertise to the masses. One example is the beer industry, where companies such as Budweiser and Heineken have created unique product propositions by leveraging sponsorship of the NFL and UEFA Champions League. Furthermore, as both Budweiser and Heineken want to naturally integrate their brand and products with the consumers of sport leagues and clubs, the NFL and UEFA Champions League present a unique on-field product for their consumers without intrusive outside influences. Thus, by having sponsorships, sport leagues and clubs are able to vie for multimedia audiences, while creating unique experiences for fans and supporters. Therefore, like the various successful sport leagues before it, NISA and its member clubs begin the season with a unique on-field product, and a variety of sponsors to elevate NISA’s initial season and beyond.

Investment from sponsors is mutually beneficial.  In exchange for making customers more aware of their brand, sponsors help clubs sustain themselves as an additional source of revenue. In NISA’s case, we have established a great partnership with Hummel.  They have presented our clubs with a sponsorship option that some of our clubs have chosen to trigger while others did not. That is the true beauty of an arrangement designed to improve sustainability, while preserving club autonomy. Using the Greenhouse analogy NISA Nation presented a couple of weeks ago, the Hummel agreement could be looked upon as plant food.  Not every plant needs the extra nourishment, but for some it is just an extra resource to ensure they can thrive.

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