A new model of sponsorship – communities, places and people

Footballplayer in 32Red-shirt
Fri, 04 Oct, 2019

Over the last 12 months, Kindred Group has driven forward an ambitious project to change the way organisations like ours sponsor sport. Sponsors have unique links to communities, places and people. The power of football is something that can be leveraged in an enormously positive way to effect change. And our new model of sponsorship - that benefits both sporting organisations and communities - continues to grow. 

Having worked with Derby County’s Community Trust on their ‘Team Talk’ project that aims to support hundreds of men across Derby who are struggling with mental health problems, we expanded our work into horse racing. Investing in the #GoRacingGreen project during a pilot project at Newbury Racecourse allowed us to help the initiative expand and ensure racing is available for anyone with mental health issues.

Our Group Sustainability Framework underpins this work and providing benefits to the communities we reach is vital. But we are also keen to show that British football can help 32Red reach the right audience with positive messaging about responsible gambling. We want our messaging to promote responsible gambling and we want to make potential gamblers aware of the variety of tools we have available, that allow them to ensure their gambling experience is enjoyed responsibly.

The power of football

Football clubs have a unique reach and cut through with adult audiences, and as such are a great avenue for promoting healthier gambling behaviour and advocating for control. The power of football to reach across communities and audiences is like no other and sport is a fantastic avenue for messaging to be communicated. 

That is why we now have expanded our responsible gambling strategy through our 32Red and Unibet brands in the UK. This new initiative will see responsible gambling messaging dominate all matches where two 32Red teams play each other during the 2019/20 season, as well as recommitting to boosting the level of responsible gambling messaging across our other assets in football. 

Having debuted the initiative during one of the biggest matches in world football – Rangers vs Celtic – where Rangers’ amended front of shirt logo carried ‘32Red: Stay in Control’ and was seen by a live audience of over 670,000 people, we are now ready to go further.

This approach of responsible gambling inspired front of shirt logos will be a feature across all our sponsored clubs, with the televised Championship fixture of Leeds United vs Derby County at Elland Road being the first example in the English Football League. 

The importance of committing

Our commitment also extends to utilising Kindred Group’s other assets in football, including current LED stadium perimeter advertising board assets – which have so far seen a cumulative audience of over 8.5m people this season. Furthermore, programme advertising, in-stadia advertising, social media and emails will all see an increase in the level of responsible gambling messaging. 

Much has been said about gambling companies and our involvement in football. But at Kindred, we are clear: gambling companies and the wider industry have an important role to play in tackling problem gambling. To remove the industry from the public’s eye would be irresponsible. 

Instead, we are using our assets to cut through effectively with adult audiences in football. By promoting healthier gambling behaviour and advocating for control, we can work together with both our customers and wider society to make real progress in ensuring people gamble responsibly. 

Follow the livestreaming of Kindred Group´s Sustainability Gambling Conference on Tuesday 8th of October.