Soccer Sponsorship

The Battle of Branding

Let's hear it for the boys.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    Whichever sporting-goods company pays the most for the next contract will enjoy a sky-high profile as the outfitter in the world’s biggest sport for the world’s largest professional sports association.

  • Facts


    • The next contract would cost the outfitter at least €50 million a year, making it twice as expensive as the current deal.
    • Puma’s annual sales of barely €3 billion pale in comparison to Nike’s (€27.8 billion) and Adidas (€14.5 billion).
    • Puma and Adidas were founded by feuding brothers after World War II.
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The German Football Association, DFB, already has a full plate of grave issues to face, but the nation’s governing body for soccer needs to make room for one more: Who will be allowed to supply the DFB teams with jerseys and tracksuits when the contract with Adidas runs out in 2018?

Besides Germany-based Adidas, the name of one of its greatest competitors is being floated: Nike. The American firm is said to be interested in beating one of the world’s best-known sports brands on its home turf.

The battle for branding comes despite the current DFB scandal, which has revealed some dirty players in the world of German soccer concerning the country’s successful bid to host the 2006 World Cup. Top officials have already resigned, including Wolfgang Niersbach, the president, but questions still remain about an opaque €6.7 million ($7.1 million) payment from the DFB to the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA).

The weight and gravity of the scandal means DFB’s managers are barely treading water with normal business activities, and their outfitting contract now held by Adidas has been neglected.

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