THW Kiel emerge as champions after VELUX EHF FINAL4 2020
THW Kiel became the first club to win the VELUX EHF FINAL4 for the third time in December 2020, finishing the 2019/20 club season on a high.
Kiel had previously won the VELUX EHF FINAL4 in 2010 and 2012, and as in their first victory in Cologne, they beat Barça after an intense final in the LANXESS arena, winning 33:28.
With four trophies (including 2007), Kiel are second-ranked in the EHF Champions League title ranking, now ahead of treble winners Ciudad Real and just below record winners Barça (eight titles).
Coach Filip Jicha became the third person to win the EHF Champions League as a player and a coach after Talant Dujshebaev and Roberto Parrondo – and the first to win it with the same club, as the Czech was a crucial part of Kiel’s triumphs in 2010 and 2012.
THW right wing Niclas Ekberg completed the 2019/20 season with 85 goals, the most of any player, while line player Hendrik Pekeler was named MVP of the VELUX EHF FINAL4 2020.
Paris Saint-Germain took third place, beating Telekom Veszprém 31:26. Veszprém had the previous day lost to Kiel after extra time in their semi-final.
VELUX EHF FINAL4 was the culmination of a 10-year partnership between EHF Marketing and the VELUX Group which set new standards for sponsorship in handball. Between 2010 and 2020 the partnership saw 11 mesmerising VELUX EHF FINAL4 events in Cologne.
We’re really proud of what we have achieved together with our colleagues at the VELUX Group over the past 10 years. Together we have been successful in developing a partnership that has enabled us to not only fulfil but also surpass the expectations of the VELUX Group as title sponsor.
The partnership covered not just naming rights, but also included campaigns driving fan engagement and supporting grass-roots handball around the world.
The ‘Let’s Play’ project highlighted this, with over 15,000 free handballs delivered to 48 countries around the world as 1,289 youth teams showed their passion for handball by taking part in the campaign.
Record-breaking VELUX EHF FINAL4
THW Kiel’s journey to the VELUX EHF Champions League 2019/20 title was followed by millions across the globe at the VELUX EHF FINAL4 2020 in Cologne in December.
EHF Marketing had secured 40 broadcasters to distribute the EHF FINAL4 to more than 80 territories. This included a first-time presence in China as well as more than 800 broadcasting hours in the markets of the four participating teams – France, Germany, Hungary and Spain – and beyond.
At German broadcaster Eurosport a combined audience of more than one million tuned in over the two days, with figures peaking at 550,000 and a market share of up to 2 per cent during the final when THW Kiel ended a 22-match unbeaten run of their opponents, Barça, in the EHF Champions League to claim the trophy.
Augmented reality was used as part of the TV production for the first time and showcased in the opening shows and during the matches themselves, bringing the court action even closer to the fans watching from home.
On the European Handball Federation’s OTT platform, EHFTV, more than 100,000 fans followed the four matches, resulting in record unique visitor numbers on both matchdays.
More than 600 individual clips were uploaded to the EHF’s own digital channels as well as on those of partners and stakeholders, generating a reach of 13 million and plenty of engagement during the event.
Creation and delivery of all clips was executed through a new content distribution process which was implemented earlier this year by the EHF and EHF Marketing together with DAZN and which can automatically generate tailor-made content for every stakeholder.
These are extraordinary figures for European club handball at the end of a very special year 2020. They are among the best recorded for a VELUX EHF FINAL4, and we are very happy that we could deliver our highlight event to so many fans around the world
These numbers really show that all efforts have been worth it and through our partners, the established as well as the new ones, we have reached a global audience.