Sport sponsorship spend to hit £49bn in 2024 but rightsholders are missing out

May 3 – Football clubs and sports generally are missing out on £14 billion of sponsorship money annually, according to an analysis by sports marketing agency Two Circles.

With the spend on sports sponsorship predicted to grow to £35 billion globally in 2019, Two Circles say that rights-holders are significantly under-exploiting their sponsorship assets which they estimate to be worth £49 billion globally.

The £14 billion gap, they say, is due to unsold inventory, unreported engagement and outdated asset-packaging.

“Most rights-holders continue to package and sell sponsorship just as they did 20 years ago – offering brand exposure through linear broadcast coverage as the main benefit for brands,” said Gareth Balch, Two Circles CEO.

“Globally we’re spending more time consuming entertainment on digital platforms; we consistently see a disparity between what brands need to reach an audience effectively and quantifiably, and what digital assets rights-holders are able to offer in their sponsorship packages.”

Two Circles predicts spend on sponsorship will increase by 6% on average year-on-year between 2020 and 2024 to hit £48 billion by the end of the period.

Betting ads currently make up 12% of sports sponsorship spend in the UK alone, and new ad restrictions on online gamers in particularly will impact sponsorship growth but even so sport sponsorship is still seen as a major opportunity for rights holders and brands alike.

Balch added: “Rights-holders are adapting to this new world and we predict a sports sponsorship correction: by embracing the power of data and digital to create sponsorship assets that better satisfy the objectives of brands, rights-holders will realise the true value of their sponsorship businesses. This will drive greater spend from brands in all sectors, not just the ‘traditional’ sectors for sport such as financial services, automotive, airlines and gambling.”

Source: Two Circles

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