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Get Your Kit On

Even choosing a kit shouldn’t be left to a whim.  It is another commercial discipline in running a sports enterprise, where ‘beauty parades’ and bench-marking are prudent.

We have been involved in several competitive tenders for kit suppliers, with that of Manchester Rugby Club the latest.

Following last season’s promotion, this Club is honoured to have been named recently Rugby World Club of the Year. It is the second oldest rugby union club in the World. A 24-acre site with a mix of sporting and social facilities. The Club has some amazing memorabilia that would be prime in any rugby exhibition. Why not see for yourself by visiting?

It thrives on its strong community commitment with teams from Under 7s to Senior Rugby, for men, women, girls and boys. The Club has the whole range of teams that not many clubs can boast.  The Mini and Junior (M&J) section has recently produced some amazing talent with 4 Premiership rugby players (more than any other club in England) and 6 England players in the last 5 years.

ACROBAT | FCSM approached ten suppliers and received ten tenders.  The quality was high and infact all were credible brands in the marketplace, though some more established in Northern Hemisphere than others, but all were suited.

The shortlisting was conducted in accordance with the Club and although two suppliers were favoured in terms of benefit-in-kind, quality, reliability and pricing – only one made the final cut and O’Neills were awarded a 3 year deal taking us to the end of the 2019/20 season.

O’Neills, combined leading edge sportswear design with competitive delivery times. It is Ireland’s leading sportswear manufacturer. A Company steeped in heritage like Manchester Rugby, it was founded in 1918, now trading as O’Neills International Sports Company Ltd and employing over 600 people.

Manchester Rugby Club is currently actively looking for sponsors and can offer both positions on shirts and partnership opportunities that can deliver tangible returns-on-investment.  Please contact Adrian Stores at manchesterrugby@acrobatfcsm.com for informal, no obligation communication on how working together can help a company or brand.

National Pride

It has been with great pleasure that Stockport Volleyball Club (‘the S’PORT) has been accepted into the National Volleyball League (NVL).  From a standing start two years ago, we now compete against the elite in the National League Division 3 North.

The delay is posting is because the process of application has not been straightforward with some stakeholders , outwith the Club, attempting to undermine, our progressive young club.  To date the successes have been primarily at junior level, but now, ‘on the big stage’,  our adult players will simply give it their best shots.

The proposed venue for this completion will be Life Leisure Priestnall that is currently progressing plans so that equipment and line markings as per FIVB court design are incorporated.

With acceptance to NVL the S’PORT enters automatically the Cup – a competition which has proven to be very popular and gives clubs from non-NVL and lower-NVL divisions the opportunity to pit their wits against the Super 8 sides!

Finally, we also have applied to enter the Yorkshire Series ‘Beach Volleyball’ where Coach Rafal and Pawel will show the Stockport-skills on sand.

Anyone interested in playing at whatever level from beginner to elite,   please do check our website and contact info@stockportvolleyball.com in the first instance.  Yours in #volleyball.

Photo caption: Delighted by the appointment of two newcomers to #TheS’PORT Volleyball Committee. Matt and Rafal. Photograph Alongside Chairman, Adrian Stores and Treasurer, Neil Cartwright

Symbiotic SunSense

Securing the ‘partnering’ relationship between Australia’s leading sun cream brand and a leading women’s cycling team – SunSport Velo, was a logical pairing this Year. I purposefully use the word ‘partnering’ as it is no longer the norm that investors respond to begging bowls each season but seek, and should rightly do so, some form of return. Our lead sponsor, also secured by ACROBAT | FCSM,  in Brother UK, keeps the Team’s Management on its toes with reviews and feedback against expectations at predetermined intervals.

There might have been a tendency by the girls to splash on the lotion and sunbathe, but that would infact conflict with the brand ethics of a Company dedicated to alerting people to the harm of the sun’s rays. It only promotes Factor 50 sprays and creams with the more appropriate message of such as: “We’re wearing @SunSenseUK  Sport today to keep our skin protected; We love to use @SunSenseUK to keep our skin protected from harmful UV rays; We use @SunSenseUK Sport to stay protected!”. We need to manage brand credentials in any relationship and sponsorship in what must be a symbiotic ‘Win-Win’ for satisfaction and longevity, between Team and Sponsor.

I used the Sport Mist Spray on my holidays and have to say it is the best protection, that I’ve ever applied. Will buy more before any future trips where I might need to be covered from https://www.crawfordhealthcare.com/skincare/sunsense/sport-mist/. The SunSense Sport range is ideal for outdoor sports enthusiasts looking for high a high level of protection against harmful UVA and UVB rays.Tested to stringent Australian standards SunSense Sports range comes in two forms, SunSense Sports Gel and SunSense Sport Mist, both offer SPF 50 broad-spectrum protection.  For anyone further interested in this critical subject matter and implications in the sports sector, see: http://www.sunsense.co.uk/blog/2017/the-ultimate-guide-to-sun-protection-for-outdoor-sports.aspx

There remains more opportunities to partner with SunSport Velo. From localised campaigns in different geographical locations to 4M on ITV4 with potential metrics to 90+M on social media penetration worldwide. There’s something for all budgets.

Contact: sunsportvelo@acrobatfcsm.com

Photo credit: @chrismeadsphoto

Broken Countries: Stay or Go #Britain #Turkey

As I awake this Easter Holiday and reflect on Sky News and the day’s and previous day’s events, I am tempted to recite those famous lyrics of The Clash band ‘Should I stay or should I go now?’.  Not afraid of being controversial, I put forward a viewpoint that might suggest some undertones and causes of unacceptable behaviour by sporting fans, that may have roots in the turmoil in the indigenous countries.  On this occasion, I’m advocating a view  of ‘Broken Britain’ and ‘Broken Turkey’.

Well respected sports journalists this week recalled events in Spain surrounding Leicester City’s supporters invasion of Madrid in the Champions League.  David Conn reported: “Leicester fans in a square in Madrid chanting ‘You Spanish bastards. Gibraltar is ours”. Oliver Holt: “Last night – Dortmund fans sharing their homes with Monaco fans shouting ‘Gibraltar is ours’. Makes you despair”. The Gibraltar subject being one of a newsworthy matter of potential #Brexit conflict in negotiations now that article 50 has been evoked.

It’s not that freedom of speech should be curtailed vis-a-vis Turkey’s President Recep Tayip Erdogan. However, with the ‘Foxes” incident, I advocate this mirrors a growing trend among English fans to aggression, racism, hooliganism and isolation. Leicester merely mimics a Country-wide trend, witnessed personally by me following the English national Team.

I still recite the demographics and metrics of the stereotypical ‘Brexiteers’ as a contract to the ‘Remainers’.  Of course, one should be wary of tarring all with that same brush, but it has been exposed that poverty, disillusionment and ignorance were common traits of that, slightly more than half of the Country, that voted for us to leave Europe.  I feel the same disadvantaged populous are those that are found among these hooligans.  I also suggest that this is not just a few, but the way an increasing portion of the British population are moving. The future can only mean more turmoil if such idiotic beliefs and unacceptable behaviour are likely to grow.  It this a ‘time bomb’ waiting to explode?  Is this the Country that we want future generations to be brought up in?

Last night, the fans of Besiktas rioted in France. The current documentaries by Simon Reeve on Turkey offers an unbiased reporting of the characteristics and frailty in both economic, cultural and political terms.  Here there is a clear hypothesis that by the ruling party allowing more immigration and offering relatively small ‘handouts’ to the poorer segment of society then what is happening is tantamount to ‘buying votes’ to further the aims and securing the power of that same AK Parti. The referendum is upon us which could give the biggest boost to that political party and widen the gap between Islamists and the traditional supporters of modern Turkey for which Ataturk was catalyst.

Okay – maybe a tenuous link, but I would promote one theory that hooliganism in football with Turkish fan involvement, may also have roots in the unrest from their homeland (By the way, I have also seen French supporters that are not blameless and witnessing firsthand where such as socio-disadvantage, ethnicity and social-exclusion may have inflamed situations).

In a short blog post, one should be wary of generalisations. Yest, I feel there could be factors much wider than traditional football supporting motivations that are now driving behaviour.  Where, I live bus loads of Turks, many of which I know, have travelled to London for advance voting to try and prevent increased influence to Erdogan. In this same area, the majority voted Remain in the EU Referendum.  So whilst some comfort in being surrounded by like-minded people, I do worry about the future in both of these two great countries and for the first time actually contemplate ‘Go’ in search of the best future for my family.

Adrian Stores is CEO at ACROBAT | FCSM.  It concentrates on marketing, sponsorship and fundraising – mainly in UK and Turkey. More information: http://www.acrobatfcsm.com