The Sports Business Weekly Wrap-up is being posted a little later than normal this week but we’ll blame the England game last night for that one. I don’t want to speak too soon but could it be coming home? Is this our best chance?
There’s a little bit of everything covered this week with the sports business news I’ve spotted. It was pretty heavy football wise this week but the stories are interesting, promise.
Ares Management invest in Atletico Madrid
A bit of financial news from La Liga caught my eye on Monday as we got the week underway. Reigning champions, Atletico Madrid have agreed a deal with Ares Management which will see €181.8 million (US$216.9 million) invested into the club in return for a 33.96 percent stake in the holding company that owns Atletico.
The investment comes with the aim of shoring up Atletico’s finances as income has obviously been impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. In recent years the club has also invested in a new stadium and many new players so debt was already high with it apparently getting close to the €1 billion mark last year.
Jim Miller of the investment management company said “Ares is pleased to make this strategic investment in Atletico de Madrid given its international brand equity, loyal fan base and resilience through the Covid-19 pandemic.”
It’s been a tough year for the world of sport with the major revenue stream of fans attending games being taken away so it isn’t really a surprise to see clubs taken on investment from external partners to help see them through.
Tour De France x Tissot
The luxury watchmaker, Tissot has extended its partnership with the Tour De France and La Vuelta. The Swiss based company have been sponsors of the most famous cycling race in the world since 2016 and have been making timekeeping tools to use in sport since 1938.
The length of the new partnership deal has not been disclosed but I’d imagine it’d be around the same length as the last one, 4 years.
Christian Prudhomme, director of the Tour de France said “I am delighted that we are extending our partnership with the legendary watchmaker from Le Locle. Cycling events are often decided by a few seconds, sometimes even a few thousandths in some finishes.”
Tom Brady x FTX
Dived back into the world of cryptocurrency as we hit the halfway stage of the week with the news that Tom Brady has taken an equity stake in the cryptocurrency exchange, FTX in return for serving as an ambassador.
Recognised world-wide as one of the greatest NFL quarterbacks of all time, Brady has been an advocate for crypto and its uses for a while now so a move like this doesn’t come as a surprise. His wife Gisele has also taken equity in the company and will serve as an advisor on environmental and social initiatives. The pair join the company with the aim of helping drive crypto adoption. Brady said “This particular opportunity showed us the importance of educating people about the power of crypto while simultaneously giving back to our communities and planet.”
Burnley x TikTok
Since ALK Capital took over the Lancashire Premier League club at the beginning of this year, they have invested significantly into the club including the women’s team and that continued on Thursday as they announced a new partnership with TikTok.
The multi-year deal will see every Burnley FC Women home game shown live on the TikTok app during the 2021/22 season and they will also become sleeve sponsors.
Since ALK’s takeover, the club have professionalised the women’s team and from next season they will use sport the same crest as the men’s team and no longer sit as a separate team within the club.
Burnley Chairman Alan Pace said “We hope this deal will bring our club and players to a new generation of fans and I’m delighted that from next season we’ll truly be one club for all – one team, under one crest.”
For me, Burnley are a club to really keep an eye on for what they’re doing off the pitch as the new owners have started off really strongly when it comes to doing exactly what they said they would do. It’s refreshing to see new owners come into a club and execute on things rather than just talk about them.
Newcastle x Castore
We’re sticking with football to end the week as Castore continue to make waves in the sportswear space. The UK brand have signed a multi-year deal with Newcastle United which according to Sportcal is worth £5 million per year will see Castore produce the clubs playing and training kits, and will also take over the day-to-day running of the clubs e-commerce operations.
This is the second kit deal that Castore have secured in the Premier League as in the last few months they have signed a partnership with Wolves.
Part of the plan with Newcastle is to also open up additional Newcastle United retail stores in the city centre, making both the products and the club more accessible to the fans. Tom Beahon, Castore’s co-founder said of the deal “We believe the partnership signals not only a new shirt for the new season but also a new start, a new better for this iconic club.”
Newcastle United has long been a sleeping giant in the Premier League and nowhere near the levels they deserve to be at so it is refreshing to see them bring in an innovative brand for the 2021/22 season. I really like the idea of the brick and mortar stores in Newcastle city centre as well, allowing fans to connect and physically interact with the club.
That’s the Sports Business Weekly Wrap-up done for another week. Out of the five stories I’ve mentioned in this weeks edition, the Burnley one is the one that’s really stood out. I’m a big fan of what ALK Capital have been doing since they came into the club at the beginning of this year. I do wonder what the end goal is for them but they’ve made some positive steps so far.
If you would like to read previous editions of the Sports Business Weekly Wrap-up, you can do so by clicking here.