What do the sponsors expect from the World Cup

Vedomosti learned that tens of millions of dollars of FIFA partners pay off.
"Without a doubt, the World Cup in Russia will give less financial opportunities than in Brazil four years ago," said Casper Rorsted, CEO of Adidas Group (Adidas and Reebok brands) at a teleconference for the first quarter of 2018. "But we, looking forward to this event, this is a fantastic way to bring our brand around the world to life. "

The World Cup in Russia (June 14 - July 15) has three sponsors: the partners of the International Football Association (FIFA) - Adidas, Coca-Cola, Wanda Group, Gazprom, Hyundai Motor Group, Quatar Airways and Visa, sponsors this championship - Bud, Hisense, McDonald's, Mengniu, Vivo, as well as a new group - regional sponsors Alfa Bank, Alrosa Rostelecom and RZD. According to Forbes, FIFA partners pay it annually $ 25-50 million, the sponsors of the championship - $ 10-25 million. Interviewed by Vedomosti, the sponsors have differently assessed the impact of the championship on their business.

According to Rorsted, in 2018 Adidas sales in Russia will cease to fall (over the past three years, according to the company, they have halved, now it is 660 million euros) - including at the expense of the World Cup: for the time of its holding the company will open stores in zones of attraction of fans. Adidas twice massively closed stores: in 2015 - about 160, in 2017 - about 200 points.

Following the manufacturers of mass-market goods, the marketing value of the World Championship was evaluated by premium brands
The entry tourist flow to Russia will grow by 300 000-500 000 people, says a representative of the Visa payment system: the fans will increase spending by cards in the country by 10-25%. Alfa-Bank expects profit growth: new customers will appear, transactions and acquiring become more, Oksana Belyaeva, marketing director of the bank, is sure.

Transportation of guests and participants of the championship is organized by the regional sponsor - RZD. This will increase the international brand recognition, especially in Europe, connected with Russia by direct rail service, the representative of Russian Railways explains.

In 2018, Rostelecom became a sponsor. Its basic service is IPTV, and sports fans are one of the most important segments of the pay-TV audience, the representative of Rostelecom explains: the company expects to strengthen the loyalty of subscribers with special offers for fans, as well as for bars, cafes and restaurants. How this will affect the financial performance, he refused to discuss.

Sponsorship of the World Cup 2018 allows to communicate directly with the audience around the world, to strengthen the emotional connection of consumers with the brand at the expense of events and at stadiums, and beyond, and in the media, believes the director of legal issues and corporate relations "Sun Inbev" ("daughter »Anheuser-Busch InBev) Oraz Durdiev. The sale of beer is one of the components of sponsorship, he continues, in the long run, it increases the brand value. Asked how the brand's sales will grow at the expense of the championship in Russia, he did not respond.

The competition will increase beer consumption, Morgan Stanley predicted in the review: fans will increase the market by 2%, this will be the first growth in 10 years. Four years ago, Reuters wrote that the championship in Brazil will increase local sales of beer by 1-2%, and with the success of the Brazilian national team - and 3%. After the Brazilian championship, beer sales worldwide AB InBev grew by 7%, recalls the general director of the RMA business school, Kirill Kulakov.

The population of Brazil is 70 million more than Russia, Kulakov argues: this is a priori a larger market for sponsors. And in Russia, according to polls, only 53% of the population will be involved in the championship. In Brazil in 2014, such people were more than 80%. In Russia there are not football regions at all, complains Kulakov: for example, Siberia and Dalnik Vostok.

The more popular football, the more attention to large football events, the greater the popularity, brand awareness of sponsoring companies, which leads to sales growth during and after events, agrees Deloitte Group Consumer Goods Manager Oksana Zhupina: sales are growing at the expense of both the main population, and numerous tourists.

Companies working in the consumer goods sector are more interested in attracting the consumer's attention to their products, it is more difficult to do this in the services sector, since the sale process itself is longer, Zhupina believes. The championship in Russia already affects the sales of sportswear, soft drinks and beer, that is, the sales of sponsors such as Adidas, Bud and Coca-Cola, support her Kulakov.

In April 2017 the Financial Times newspaper wrote that FIFA had difficulty finding sponsors for the tournament in Russia: international and local companies shied away from contracts because of large amounts and reputational risks. Russia may not be very attractive to sponsors, Kulakov agrees: the crisis in relations with the West influences business as well, and after corruption scandals in FIFA in 2015, sponsors do not want to spoil their reputation by associating their name and brand with the association.