It is hotly debated whether shorts-sponsoring is a lucrative and efficient source of revenue for sports teams or whether it overloads the sports market with publicity. While the debate becomes more and more passionate and emotional, sports lawyers and associations have already clarified certain obscurities and passed new laws. Sponsoo points the recent developments concerning shorts-sponsoring in Germany.
1. Arminia Hannover and the origin of shorts-sponsoring in Germany
In 2003, Arminia Hannover was financially stricken. Jürgen Scholz, chairman of Arminia Hannover, and sports lawyers thought about strategies to save the club.
The idea: To use all spaces on the shorts for sponsoring… No sooner said than done!
They acquired the local fashion chain “Kanzlerstadt“ as sponsorship partner for their shorts. However, the sports tribunal of the Northern football association (NFV) prohibited the shorts-sponsoring. The tribunal referred to the regulations of the NFV. Shorts-sponsoring was forbidden and Arminia had to pay a fine.
Chairman Scholz successfully defended the sponsorships of his club at the regional court of Hanover. Five years later, in 2008, he has won the trial. The NFV had to adjust their constitution. Since then, shorts-sponsorships are allowed in the NFV Regional League North.
Scholz had enforced his demand concerning shorts-sponsoring the first time in German football history.
2. TSV Havelse
Not only Arminia Hannover, but also other teams like TSV Havelse benefit from the new revenue sources due to shorts-sponsoring. However, in 2009/10, Havelse were confronted with the same problem as Arminia Hannover. The logo of the sponsor, a furniture supplier, had to be removed from the shorts.
Being hit hard by the decision, TSV Havelse contacted Jürgen Scholz. Together with him, he fought for a repeal of the prohibition. Another success for Schulz – At the end of 2012, the NFV board decided that shorts-sponsoring for teams in the forth tier “Regionalliga Nord“ is permitted from now on.
3. Other associations trail the NFV
The decision by the NFV made the discussion concerning shorts-sponsorship more open to the public. In 2013, the Schleswig-Holstein football association applied the new law by the NFV. Just a week later, the North-East football association adopted the the new regulations by the NFV.
4.The accurate regulations laws – a lot of room for improvement.
There are still no accurate regulations concerning the shorts-sponsoring. There is, for example, uncertainty on how large the logos of the sponsor can be or where exactly they have to be placed on the shorts. All football associations in Germany have different regulations.
All in all, we have a liberalization of shorts-sponsorship. Clubs and teams, that have not yet thought about a shorts-sponsoring, should think about it. Alongside to the jersey sponsoring, shorts-sponsoring has now established itself as a fixed source of revenue for some clubs.
We all do not know, whether one day Thomas Müller and Marco Reus are going to play in sponsored shorts. However, it definitely a lucrative source of income for amateur sports clubs with empty club funds.
Sponsoo.de is Germany’s first sports sponsoring online-platform. Clubs and teams can register for free and look for sponsors – for example, for short-sponsorships.