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The role of women's football sponsorship in city regeneration

Stadium-led regeneration is becoming an increasingly important part of economic and social enhancement for city districts and is giving a broader understanding of balanced mixed-use development.

Additionally, as cities' populations grow, there are increasing concerns over the provision of good-quality sporting and recreational facilities. We have discussed this area of regeneration at our previous forums with QPR and Bath Rugby and Everton FC, showcasing their important inner-city development projects.

Our May forum panel discussions look to the future of economic and community impact of sport in cities, and the growing interest in sponsorship 'unbundling' which will favour the fortunes of women's football, and further down the line, perhaps investment in training grounds and therefore city development.

Deloitte is predicting that sponsorship in women's football will rise 100% in time for the 2023 Women's World Cup.

The firm is revealing women's football metrics for the first time with additional findings from its annual Football Money League report. Deloitte says that three-fifths of football clubs in the world's top women's leagues have front-of-shirt sponsors that differ from the men's team according to new research from the firm's Sports Business Group. The findings based on information from the 2018/19 season, illustrate the growing trend of 'unbundling' sponsorship and commercial deals for women's football.

Izzy Wray, consultant at Deloitte, comments:

'Commercial partners and broadcasters have tended to primarily focus on, and value, men's clubs or competitions, with the women's game not valued on its stand-alone merits. However, stakeholders are now seeing the many advantages of investing in a rapidly growing area of the world's favourite sport'.

'Our analysis suggests there is currently a greater desire for brands to have an association with women's teams from France, Germany or the USA rather than in England...(however) there is now a clear financial opportunity for some of the biggest clubs in world football to realise the full value of their women's football rights, and for brands to demonstrate they are committed to, and recognise the value of, women's football. We expect separate sponsorship of women's elite teams to become the norm. Not only will this provide a way to measure the financial value of women's football, it will build greater media and fan interest, in turn generating a larger return on investment for the commercial partner'.

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