The Lions claim the two-year, “six-figure” deal will offer prominent placement for Sportsbet’s brand across all of the club’s digital properties, including desktop, mobile, app and email. The deal apparently doesn’t include any offline branding opportunities.
Sportsbet will provide integrated content that gives Lions fans all the necessary info they need ahead of each weekend’s games, while the bookmaker is also temporarily offering a free Lions jersey for new account signups.
The partnership marks a reversal of a recent trend that has seen seven AFL clubs reject sports betting partnerships after striking a deal with the Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation. The Richmond Tigers, which were formerly sponsored by Sportsbet, announced last month that they wouldn’t be re-upping with the bookie.
BOOKIES LEAD GROWTH IN EUROPEAN FOOTBALL SPONSORSHIP
There’s no reticence about hooking up with bookies in the European football world. A new study by sports and entertainment intelligence advisers Repucom shows bookmaker investment in European football jersey sponsorship rose a staggering 180% in just one year.
The European Football Jersey Report 2015/2016 shows betting/lottery companies spending €42m on football shirt deals in the current season, up from just €15m in the 2014/2015 report. The surge made the betting sector the sixth largest on the football sponsorship charts, up from 11th in the 2014/2015 report. (The top-five are, in order of magnitude: travel and tourism, automobile, banking/financial/insurance, automotive and telecommunications.)
The report covers shirt sponsorships in the English Premier League (EPL), Germany’s Bundesliga, Spain’s Primera Division, Italy’s Serie A and the Netherlands’ Eredivisie. Total shirt sponsorship rose nearly 13% year-on-year to over €830m, with the EPL accounting for just under 40% of this sum, having enjoyed over 35% growth last year.
Repucom UK & Ireland managing director Jon Stainer said that if the current rate of growth persists, the top six leagues could soon be collectively earning over €1b per year just from shirt deals. Stainer called the rise of betting companies’ sponsorship involvement “certainly worth noting” and credited investments by Betclic Everest subsidiary bet-at-home, Dafabet and Mansion with helping to drive the sector’s new chart ranking.