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Sports sponsorships in Europe

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Sports sponsorships in Europe

Sports sponsorship has become increasingly popular in recent years, as companies recognize the value of sports as a marketing tool. The European Sponsorship Association (ESA) and Nielsen Sports report that in 2022, the sports sponsorship market in Europe grew by 4.3%, amounting to €29 billion, with sports accounting for €20.69 billion of the total. This is a notable increase from the €19.80 billion spent on sports sponsorship in Europe in the prior year of 2021.

Although Europe's sports sponsorship achieved record-breaking figures, the overall value of the sponsorship market fell short by over €1bn compared to the measurements recorded in 2018 and 2019. The sponsorship market attained an all-time high of €30.69 in 2019.

Here are some of the report’s key findings on the growth of sports sponsorship in Europe:

The effects of the pandemic have been substantial, particularly when it comes to sports sponsorship in Europe

According to Nielsen Sports, the primary cause behind the resurgence of sporting events, festivals, and concerts is the easing of COVID-19 restrictions. The sports industry also reaps the rewards of hosting major tournaments, including the Women's European Championship, the Commonwealth Games in 2022, and the highly anticipated World Cup in Qatar.

Out of all countries, Spain and the UK experienced the most rapid growth

According to the latest Sponsorship Market Overview, Spain (14%) and the UK (10%) have emerged as the front-runners in Europe this year. Spain's market is thriving on the back of a stable environment after the 2021 betting sponsorship ban. Commercial growth is boosted by the contributions of FC Barcelona and Atlético de Madrid. The partnership also extends to female athletes being appointed as ambassadors. The Premier League's continued ascent is one of the major drivers behind the UK's surge in sponsorship.

Overall, the ESA and Nielsen Sports reports highlighting the growing importance of sports sponsorship in Europe, a market that continues to grow faster than the global average. Investing in sports sponsorship allows businesses to build their brand, engage with consumers and increase sales, while sports assets can benefit from the financial support and exposure sponsors provide. As the industry continues to evolve, it will be interesting to see how sport sponsorship develops and what opportunities it presents for sponsors and sports properties alike.

Sources: ESA, Nielsen Sports Report

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