Last Week Today: May 3 – May 9, 2021 Sponsorship News
This is part of our "Last Week Today" series that includes a weekly roundup of the past week's most exciting and industry-altering news. Check back on our blog every week for updates! These stories cover sponsorship news for May 3 – May 9, 2021.
New Sports Rising
As studies continue to note the differences between older and younger generations in regards to sports preferences, discovering what connects with Gen Z will be key for brands considering future sports sponsorships. For Gen Z (ages 6 to 24) there is more willingness to experience new sports, primarily due to how they consume media. The quick, highlight-driven content packaged for social media has given rise to the popularity of sports like Mixed Martial Arts and esports with younger fans. The “big four” of football, basketball, baseball and hockey remain the most popular sports in the United States overall, but that could change as Gen Z grows into their market share and buying power.
Google to Search for WNBA Solution
With the recently announced partnership between the WNBA and Google now in the books, both groups will begin the task of increasing viewership in the league. Along with ESPN, Google will hope to increase the presence of the women’s league on a variety of media channels. For the WNBA, increased visibility would be a vital step to more lucrative sponsorships and media rights deals. At the moment, less than 1% of sponsorship money is allocated to women’s sports. This, unfortunately, impacts the professional leagues such as the WNBA which has lost millions of dollars per year since forming in 1996.
Super Threat to the Tour?
Only weeks after a similar concept was unsuccessfully entertained by the world’s top soccer clubs, a group of investors from Saudi Arabia are looking to organize a “Super Golf League” for the world’s top players. This team-style tournament schedule would be separate from the current PGA Tour calendar of events. In fact, the Tour has ensured that the new league would be separate as they have threatened lifetime bans for any players who join the new organization. While a stiff penalty, there could still be golfers willing to take that risk due to the ten-figure offers that have reportedly been offered. If the big names join in, the sponsors will not be far behind.
Big Game Winner? The One’s Bringing It to You
It was mainly Buccaneers and Baylor fans that were celebrating after their championship runs, but both events also led to the solid performance for ViacomCBS in its 2021 Q1 earnings. Both championships were on ViacomCBS channels and were opportunities for the company to promote content for its streaming networks such as Paramount+. Increased viewership on these services helped ViacomCBS hit $7.4 billion in revenue for the March period. While a different kind of football, ViacomCBS will also be sure to see good numbers from their upcoming Champions League final between Chelsea and Manchester City on May 29.
Be on the lookout next week for the usual round-up of sponsorship news.