Charities presented as “sponsors” in sports: are sports teams’ benevolence beneficial for concurrent sponsors?
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- Master of Science 
This study investigates implications of having a charity partner presented alongside sponsors in sports. This phenomenon is especially prevalent among football clubs, most prominently the partnership between Unicef and FC Barcelona. As there are poured billions into sponsorship deals every year it is paramount to investigate factors that can increase and decrease return on investment (ROI) of these deals; one such factor can be the presence of a charity partner. This study considers brand recall and brand attitude transfer mainly. The study finds that a charity is easier to recall than a regular sponsor, which might reduce the ROI of the concurrent regular sponsors. Furthermore, it is hypothesised that the positive brand attitudes that are typically associated with a charity will transfer onto the other concurrent sponsors. The results confirm that brand attitudes can transfer to concurrent sponsors. More specifically, a charity partner will increase the sponsor attitude of the concurrent sponsors. Also, this study investigates effects related to if a charity is disliked, as it represents an area that has split opinions among the general public (refugee aid, environmental activists etc.), will the team and concurrent sponsors get negatively affected by its presence? The results show that the attitude towards the concurrent regular sponsors or the team itself is not negatively affected and that it actually can increase the sincerity and fit-perceptions of the concurrent regular sponsors due to contrast effects. Implications for managers of sponsors, sports teams and charities are presented, where the results of this survey implicate that there are likely more benefits than there are drawbacks for all parties involved to include a charity among regular sponsors. Directions for future research concentrates on replicating the findings in a large-scale longitudinal study.
Masteroppgave(MSc) in Master of Science in Strategic Marketing Management - Handelshøyskolen BI, 2017