At a glance: deals and moves in the Irish sponsorship market for the month of JULY

With Euro 2016 a distant memory it’s time for this year’s second sponsorship behemoth, the Olympic Games.

Rule 40 – be warned!

Rule 40 is written into the Olympic Charter for the purpose of protecting the rights of official sponsors of the games. Under the rule non-official sponsors are restricted from associating with the Games. For example, during a ‘lock-out period’ (June 27th – August 24th) brands that are not official Olympic sponsors cannot use words such as Rio; Rio de Janeiro; Gold; Silver; Bronze; Medal; Effort; Performance; Challenge; Summer; Games; Sponsors; Victory; Olympia; Olympic; Olympics.

The IOC did decide to relax the Rule for this year’s Games allowing generic and non-Olympic advertising during the above period. Either way brands and companies must, work creatively within the rules. This is an important consideration for Irish brands wishing to capitalise on the games.

In other sports related sponsorship news, Elverys Intersport reignited its sponsorship deal with Pro 12 Winners, Connacht Rugby by replacing Lifestyle Sports. In a three year deal, Elverys has agreed to be the new title sponsor and official retail partner of the team. The deal re-establishes the relationship between Elverys and the rugby team that dates back to 2005. Elverys Chief Executive, Patrick Rowland, noted that re-establishing a relationship with Connacht was a perfect fit due to their roots in the West of Ireland.

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Sticking with sports sponsorship stories, the Galway club Shiven Rovers was named as the Aviva FAI Club of the Year for 2016 this month. The club beat seven other finalists to take the title. Martin O’Neill, Republic of Ireland Manger, said; “The Aviva FAI Club of the Year award is one of the most significant awards for the FAI every year and I’m delighted to see the great work that each club has been doing.” Aviva has committed to its partnership with the FAI through this competition and other channels.

More local sponsorship news came in the form of Supermac’s, the popular Irish fast-food chain coming on board as the latest sponsor of the All Ireland Fleadh Cheoil in Ennis, Co. Clare. The deal will see the well-known restaurant contributing a six figure sum towards the organisation of a hugely successful musical event which takes place every year. This deal is a perfect fit for Supermac’s, given its strong ties to local communities in the west of Ireland especially. This will only serve to strengthen those ties and further drive the brand’s values.

The GAA announced this month that the Unilever-owned deodorant brand Sure would become its “official statistics partner.” As part of the arrangement Sure will offer viewers in-game match and player statistics. This sort of partnership is commonplace in televised sports in the US and Europe and is a further illustration of the commercial nature of the GAA.

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Moving to the world of media sponsorships, the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) has drafted an update to its laws on advertising, and more specifically sponsorship and product placement. These proposed changes are sure to have a significant impact on the industry. The draft, which is open to public consultation, suggests loosening the rules on sponsorship stings so that “calls to action”, which include phrases like “log on now” or “find out more at…” These changes, if implemented would drastically change the nature of sponsorship stings moving them to an advertising-like format.

In terms of available properties on the market, there are some real heavy hitters available at the moment. On radio RTE has two excellent availabilities in Liveline with Joe Duffy and Marian Finucane’s show. Both shows have massive reach and frequency figures and hit national audience. They are on the market for €350k and €195k p/a respectively.

On the TV side of things TV3 is looking for a sponsor for two of their landmark shows, The Midday Show is on the market for €120k. The critically acclaimed, IFTA Award winning and International selling Red Rock is also returning this September in a brand new time slot. Season Three reached 1.9 million Individuals. This property is also on the market for €120k.

Photo Illustration: Yuliya Kim; Source: Getty Image