A few days ago Paddy Power announced its partnership as the main sponsor of English Championship side, Huddersfield Town FC. The team revealed its home kit with a ‘sash’ style ‘Paddy Power’ logo stretching the biggest part of the shirt. The fans of the team went outrageous and criticized heavily the new home kit of ‘The Terriers’. However, it all proved to be a hoax, part of the usual PR stunts that the company often does.
The real shirt was revealed and actually, there is no presence of the sponsor on it. Paddy Power launches in this symbolic way its new campaign called ‘Save our Shirt’. The campaign is directed to fellow bookmakers to cease from placing their names and logos on the center of football shirts.
Victor Corcoran, Managing Director of Paddy Power reached out to other sponsors to support the ‘Save our Shirt’ campaign and stop the practice of featuring the front part of the kit. He stated that the shirt should be sacred because it creates a unique bond between the fans and the club, and that a sponsor shouldn’t alter the appearance of the shirt and eventually the fans connection with the club.
Paddy Power has an active social program, too as they donated a part of their sponsorship deal with the team to Huddersfield Town Foundation. The operator intends also to have an event outside the John Smith’s Stadium at the first home fixture of ‘The Terriers’, where they will exchange this year’s shirt with previous years’ kits.
English football is flooded by online bookmakers sponsorships as the industry is flourishing being the only growing vertical in the British economy the past year. More than half of the Premiership and Championship sides feature sportsbooks as their main sponsors for the upcoming season. English football giants like Liverpool FC and Chelsea FC have announced important partnerships with the betting operator and more and more English clubs include an ‘official betting sponsor’ in their partnerships portfolio.
Paddy is the best example of “united we stand” in betting business, as they started as a merger of all Irish bookies, who expanded in many countries and eventually merged with Betfair. Nowadays Paddy’s popularity is exceeding the British Isles, their main area of interest. They’re one of the first bookmakers who took advantage of odds as a commercial campaign, offering odds on bizarre events to attract publicity. Their services could be complete if they added an Asian Handicap option to their great number of alternative betting selections. They still offer their website only in English, by choice.