Nine of the ten SSE Airtricity Premier League Clubs have secured front of shirt sponsorship deals for the 2020 season. Five are renewals but in an encouraging sign, four are brand new for this season with Bohemians, Shamrocks Rovers, Sligo Rovers and Shelbourne all attracting new money.
In another positive move from a social and reputation perspective, neither of the online casino companies that were part of the sponsorship landscape in 2019 have been renewed. The categories for 2020 are spread across furnishing, sports retail, education, construction, fitness, food, packaging insurance and finance.
Over the close season, Bohemians signed a major new three year deal with Des Kelly Interiors. The brand is local, an important part of the community and red and black to its core. The brand was on the shirt from between 2002 and 2011 and is a real winner to have it back.
They replace Mr Green an online Casino which was no longer felt to be wholly appropriate given the strong community ethos at the club.
DHL, Westbrook Motors, Dublin Bus and the Porterhouse Brewing Company are also on board for 2020.
University College Cork are on the shirts again this year and Cork City has one of the strongest portfolios of partners in the League. Adidas and the Mardyke Arena are the other Premier Partners back for 2020, while there are 21 listed club partners ranging from RedFM and Cork Airport to Carlsberg, Johnson and Perrot and the Bon Secours Hospital.
Cork also lists a total of seven charity partners and have a sponsorship brochure available for one-off opportunities.
Diamond, a manufacturer of corrugated packaging extended their main commercial partner status in the club for a period of three more years in December sponsor for this year with GMCK Engineers, City Cabs and Nando’s are also listed as partners, though a previous relationship with Mintbet has ended.
Adidas is the official kit supplier
This is the second of a two-year extension agreed by Fyffes just before the start of last season.
StatSports and Dundalk Credit Union are the other two larger commercial partners while the betting partnership this year has switched to BetRegal.
Finn Harps maintained their Premier League status last season and have been rewarded with a one-year extension of their sponsorship by KN Group.
Joma is back again as the kit sponsor.
Rovers signed a major two-year partnership with sports retailer JD Sport in recent weeks. This will involve them taking over the running of the club shop and there are exciting plans for fan activations.
There will be much to learn from a sponsor who backs Crystal Palace and Brighton in the English premiership and Borussia Dortmund in Germany
They also have partnerships in place with Hyundai, the Beacon Hospital, The Square in Tallaght, Carling, Flynn O’Driscoll solicitors and more.
Irish gym chain FLYEfit was announced last week as the new headline and front of jersey sponsor of Shelbourne Football Club.
Shelbourne are back in the top flight and also have backing from local university DCU, winners of the 2020 Collingwood Cup, as well as from Hampton Floor Store, Brooklyn Flooring and others.
Leitrim based Avantcard, a major employer in the region were announced last month as the new primary shirt front sponsors of the club.
The Bit ‘o Red had worn Connolly Motors Volkswagen logo on their shirt fronts for seven seasons.
Sligo IT are among the other club partners as well as Clayton Hotels, Off The Ball and kit manufacturer Joma.
St Patrick’s Athletic
McCarthy Insurance Group under the MIG brand is on the shirts at Richmond Park again this season. Umbro is the kit partners and they also have deals with the Green Isle Hotel, Clune Construction Group, Sportsfile Photographers and Bill Griffin Motors.
Spin online casino exited Waterford’s shirt front sponsorship once the prospect of European football was lost last season and the club was the only one at the League Season launch to have no shirt sponsor.
Sport for Business will be dropping in on a number of the SSE Airtricity League clubs throughout the season, highlighting the challenges and opportunities faced by the clubs off the field as well as on.