Football League Is At Risk Of A Sponsorship Shortfall As Npower Deal Ends
The English Football League is facing "considerable commercial problems," as energy company npower is "due to pull the plug" on its title sponsorship when its three-year deal expires at the end of the season, according to Charles Sale of the London DAILY MAIL. The exclusive renewal negotiating period ended this week for npower, which paid "a premium" £21M for the rights. However, the Football League "will have difficulty attracting another backer at a similar rate," especially with BBC no longer covering Championship matches live. In addition, the Football League’s online betting partner negotiations with BetButler "have been complicated by the funding problems of software providers Worldlink Sports." They have yet to pay money owed for similar deals struck with Newcastle, Sunderland and Fulham. In fact, npower has been "surprisingly lacklustre" in making the most of its Football League property ever since the driving power behind its sponsorship, Marketing Dir Kevin Peake, "was made redundant in a cost-cutting company restructuring last year. Peake, who now runs Aviva’s sports marketing operation, "set up a number of Football League promotional initiatives that an increasingly uninterested npower did not develop" (DAILY MAIL, 10/2).