Ahead of the 2022/23 season Machineseeker Group, Europe’s leading operator of online marketplaces for used machines and commercial vehicles, was announced as the new title sponsor for the EHF Champions League Men.
The agreement began at the start of the 2022/23 season and is initially limited until 30 June 2023.
The EHF Champions League Menis named Machineseeker EHF Champions League. The EHF FINAL4 Men 2023, the competition’s final weekend in Cologne, is named TruckScout24 EHF FINAL4 2023, highlighting one of the group’s leading marketplaces.
As part of the sponsorship Machineseeker receives extensive exposure at all 132 matches in the EHF Champions League including floor stickers and LED presence as well as integration in all relevant digital channels and websites of the Machineseeker EHF Champions League.
The Machineseeker logo became part of the competition’s official logo with the new composite insignia used on all relevant materials on site as well as in digital and print material.
Machineseeker’s engagement in the EHF Champions League follows their presence as a sponsor at matches featuring Germany at the IHF Men’s World Championship 2021 in Egypt. The group is also the biggest sponsor of Germany’s second football league and an official partner of the German Olympic team.
EHF Marketing Managing Director David Szlezak said: “We are very happy to welcome Machineseeker as title sponsor of the EHF Champions League and we are looking forward to working together to lift the competition to the next level. Machineseeker has been very active on the German sports sponsoring market, and we are confident that the EHF Champions League is the right platform to support their European expansion. All talks with Machineseeker have been marked by positivity and a forward-looking attitude. EHF Marketing is thankful for this approach and sees it as its commitment to justify the trust put into us and the EHF Champions League in the coming season.”
Machineseeker Managing Director Sven Schmidt added: “If we take the UEFA Champions League aside, the EHF Champions League is the most important European club competition. The title sponsorship strengthens our profile as the clear European market leader. Our marketplaces are number one in Spain, France, Germany, Poland, Northern Europe and Eastern Europe. This is a perfect fit with the EHF footprint.”
Patrick Ratzke, Managing Director of TruckScout24, said: “I was in Cologne this year to experience the EHF FINAL4 live. For me, it is one of the best and most exciting sporting events in Europe. I am very happy that we can sponsor the EHF FINAL4 with TruckScout24, the European number one marketplace for commercial vehicles.”
Leading sports equipment company SELECT has been a long-term partner of both the EHF and EHF Marketing. In 2022 SELECT produced four different ball designs for EHF competitions, each in line with the competition’s brand identity: the EHF Champions League, EHF European League, the Men’s EHF EURO and the Women’s EHF EURO.
European appliances giant Gorenje continues to have a flourishing partnership with EHF competitions.
At the EHF FINAL4 Men 2022 in Cologne Gorenje implemented an engaging and highly successful on-site entertainment, including promotional booths both inside and outside the venue, and an extended hospitality concept.
For the 2022/23 season EHF Marketing negotiated a prolongation of the partnership contract with Gorenje for an additional three seasons.
Gorenje is now present in all markets as a premium partner to the EHF Champions League Men, and will feature in new arenas, giving access to increased hospitality, on-site activation, side events and other opportunities. A special event was held in Kiel at the beginning of the season to communicate the prolongation. Alongside the Match of the Week, where THW Kiel beat Elverum Handball, there was a media event accompanied by on-site activation and the presence of Gorenje representatives.
During the season, activations include both digital and on-site events. Gorenje is the sponsor for the weekly live Instagram interview, ‘Timeout with Champions’, which sees Face of the Champions League Markus Floth interview top players.
Similar interviews in the previous season reached over 2.4 million people through the live Instagram stories and later views through the official Instagram page of the EHF Champions League. The concept will continue to be developed throughout 2022/23.
The 2022/23 season will also see Gorenje support other activations, including half-time prize game activities and off-court fan engagement.
During the 2021/22 season, the EHF had a fruitful and inspiring charity partnership with children’s charity Plan International, which works to advance children’s rights and equality for girls. At the EHF FINAL4 Men 2022, Plan International had an on-site booth informing fans about its work. Celebrity fitness trainer and Plan International ambassador Erik Jäger visited the event in Cologne, carrying out fun workouts for children alongside a handball coach on the court at the LANXESS Arena and experiencing the event as a guest of the EHF Champions Club. Children from HC Pulheim, near Cologne, got to experience the event, watch the final and take photos with the trophy thanks to Plan International and EHF Marketing.
There were also three seasonal activations through the 2021/22 season highlighting important gender topics: Day of the Girl Child in October; a Christmas campaign; and International Women´s Day in March. The International Women’s Day activation was of particular importance. The promotion included a special centre circle sticker, Instagram live interviews with Kentin Mahe and Julia Behnke and a video was produced with players from the EHF Champions League Women sharing their advice and messages to young girls to encourage them to follow their dreams. The video was shared on EHF channels and displayed during matchdays in round 14 of the EHF Champions League Men. The activation was enormously successful on social media, reaching 267,900 people on EHF Champions League channels.
In the scope of the partnership between hummel and the EHF Marketing, the official merchandise collection of the EHF FINAL4 events once again consisted of T-Shirts and hoodies of the Danish sports brand. In 2022 the clothing articles featured a creative design, showcasing the iconic EHF Champions League trophy. Furthermore, in a corporation with Swiss company collectID, a limited and exclusive range of the event’s merchandise t-shirts was equipped with an in-built NFC (near field communication) chip. If scanned by a mobile phone, the chip offered its user access to a content area which was filled with exclusive behind-the-scenes videos and near-live match highlight clips during the EHF FINAL4 Men 2022.
The success of the various EHF EURO tournaments would not be possible without the support of several key partners across a range of areas, helping to promote the competitions across Europe.
Infront Sports and Media is the EHF's long-term media and marketing partner and was responsible for marketing sales and securing the sale of media rights for two EHF EURO events. They also secured grocery giant LIDL as a partner for the Women’s EHF EURO, having previously brokered a relationship with the company for the Men’s EHF EURO since 2018.
The Men’s EHF EURO 2022 was supported by official partners LIDL, Grundfos, MOL, Tipsport, Gorenje, Falken, Engelbert Strauss, alongside EHF partners Infront, DAZN, Select, hummel, Gerflor, Sport Transfer, Eventim and TikTok. The Women’s EHF EURO 2022 was supported by official partners LIDL, Engelbert Strauss, Point S, Grundfos, Gjensidige and Coolbet, and partners Infront, DAZN, Select, hummel, Gerflor, Sport Transfer and Eventim.
Dry shampoo brand Batiste signed up as a partner of the Women’s EHF EURO for the first time in 2022.
The partnership gave Batiste sleeve advertising on all participating teams, plus LED minutes and sampling opportunities guaranteeing extensive coverage across Europe, and especially in key Scandinavian markets.
The brand is new to the handball market and a great fit to women’s sport, its products popular with a young, female customer base, offering opportunities to reach new audiences.
Elise Størholt Nordby, Head of Marketing Aspire brands, distributor of Batiste, said: “We are proud and honoured to partner with Women’s EHF EURO 2022. We at Batiste admire the dedication that these young women demonstrate both on and off the court every day, and their commitment to being healthy role models and true to their passion.”
A virtual overlay was used for the first time in handball at the Women’s EHF EURO 2022, implemented by media and marketing partners Infront and DZAN, and their supplier Supponor.
The partnership saw virtual advertising used on the LED perimeter boards on the long side of the court was a milestone moment for the sports industry. It marked the first virtual advertising deployment in handball and also the first ever Supponor VRT adoption during a women’s event.
The implementation of this technology allowed Coolbet, an official partner of the EHF EURO, to target key handball audiences during a select number of matches in the main round and final round.
The plan is to extend use of this technology in the future to offer a tailored approach for sponsors looking to target specific markets, with customised messaging.