Oct 26, 2009 at 04:07 PM
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U.K. Football Club Raffles Shirt Sponsorship

Europe has traditionally been ahead of the curve on new sponsorship models (just look at jersey ads!). It seems for mid-size football clubs, sponsorship raffles may actually be catching on.

U.K.'s Darlington Football Club is raffling off shirt sponsorship for the upcoming season under the newly launched Business Backing Darlington Club initiative. Even if they don't walk away with the big prize, entrants of the £5,000 drawing will walk with the following:

  • Perimeter advertising space at The Northern Echo Darlington Arena
  • One full match sponsorship, including full-page programme advert
  • Company logo in every match programme
  • A table of ten the drawing gala and dinner

    "Our deal with Darlington Building Society expires at the end of the season and we're grateful for their support over the years, but this offers us a new direction and we believe this is a unique chance most companies can't afford to miss," Darlington Chairman Raj Singh said of the offer. "A shirt sponsorship deal is a brilliant way to increase brand awareness, but it's probably something a lot of firms look at and think it's out of their reach, but this will be within a lot of company's budgets and one lucky company will end up on the front of our shirt. From a business point of view it's a no-brainer."

    Darlington's plans come on the heels of a plan by British football team, Plymouth to ebay off sponsorship and another club's efforts to raffle off stadium naming rights.

    Do you see any of these models catching on a wider scale? A couple quick deterrents to this could be tax implications and unsophisticated sponsors that may be unlikely to activate at the level properties are accustomed to. Nevertheless, we like seeing new things. What do you think?