Latest News

Back to Latest News back


Nutri-Grain and Billabong Most Recognised Sports Sponsors

Nutri-Grain and Billabong Most Recognised Sports Sponsors
June 29, 2009

Nutri-Grain has reached top position, along with Billabong, as the brands most Australians associate with being a sports sponsor.

Almost one third (30%) of Australians recognise the breakfast cereal producer as a sponsor of sport, a result of its long-term association with surf life saving.

Billabong attracts the same level of recall, despite its development into a lifestyle rather than a purely sportswear brand. Its heritage, firmly rooted in the sport of surfing through its ongoing sponsorship of individual surfers and the ASP world tour, makes it a leader in the recognition stakes.

The results are shown in the 23rd summer edition of the Sweeney Sports Report covering the 2008/09 summer.

The Report, recognised as Australia’s most authoritative sports and sponsorship survey, also shows that since previous ratings two years ago, then leader Nike has slipped to third place, ahead of Ford and Uncle Tobys at equal fourth.

The report also shows that the main movers have been KFC and Speedo, KFC rising from 73rd to 18th position with more than one of every eight people (12%) recognising it as a sponsor of sport, a result of its sponsorship in Australia of Twenty20 cricket and Melbourne Victory.

Speedo has risen from 17th to 6th position with more than one of every five people (22%) being aware of its sponsorship. Exposure during the 2008 Olympic year, when the ‘swimsuit’ became an integral tool of performance, undoubtedly helping its standing.

Meanwhile, the rating of former long-time leader, Uncle Tobys, has stabilised with slightly less than one fifth of people recognising it.

The large decreases which followed the 2001 termination of its iron man series sponsorships have stopped. It has probably been has kept high on the leadership ladder by a combination of a residual impact of the iron man promotion and its current sponsorship of Australian sports stars including Grant Hackett, Eamon Sullivan and Jana Rawlinson.

Significantly, telecommunications companies 3/ and Telstra/Big Pond have slumped from the top ten.

Cricket sponsor 3/ has suffered probably because of KFC’s success with Twenty20 cricket sponsorship, deflecting public attention from its brand.

Sweeney Sport say that "Telstra’s decline is surprising given its sponsorship of the Australian swimming team and the Australian Olympic Committee in an Olympic year. The cause of the fall is difficult to define but it may be largely a result of its non-renewal of the naming rights sponsorship of the Homebush and Docklands stadiums.

"Its naming rights sponsorship of NRL may be a contributing factor to the fall due to a softening in interest in the NRL during the past 12 months."

Emirates backs a winner
The Report’s assessment of the awareness resulting from associations between specific sponsorship properties and sponsors shows that Emirates is maintaining a clear lead.

More than a fifth of people (28%) recognise its connection with the Melbourne Cup, a six percentage point increase since last summer.

Emirates leapt from a 10% awareness rating in the year before it began sponsoring the race to 22% in the summer of 2004/05 when the sponsorship began.

Previous sponsor, Lion Nathan’s Tooheys New achieved a 17% recognition in its first year of backing the race, 2001/02 but did not improve before it withdrew two years early from its five-year deal, allowing Emirates to take over.

The results for Foster’s, the long-time sponsor before Tooheys, demonstrates the power of the race to attract attention for sponsors.

Seven years after the 12-year sponsorship ended, one of every eight people (12%) still recognise it as a backer of the race. The residual impact is similar to that which, in the overall awareness ratings, Uncle Tobys has enjoyed with surf lifesaving. In both cases, “ownership” of the event has led to the high, continuing ratings.

The Australian Open tennis-Kia association is second on the table because of tennis’s perennial popularity and the car-maker’s long-time support backed by an intensive and integrated campaign including TV advertising, stadium signage and a fleet of cars for players and officials.

The link between the Australian Rugby Union team, the Wallabies, and Qantas is the third most recognised association followed by Test cricket and 3 Mobile’s association.

The AFL-Toyota association comes in equal fifth with the Melbourne Cup-Foster’s and soccer’s A-League and Hyundai.

The Report is the 23rd summer edition of the nationally conducted Sweeney Sports Report, produced by Sweeney Sports, the sports and sponsorship arm of market research company Sweeney Research.



30th April 2008 - ASIAN SPONSORSHIPS GROW BY 50%

Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.


supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all


As of 2018, TicketServ operates as SeatGeek Asia Pacific Pty Limited, part of international ticketing platform SeatGeek. Click here to contact SeatGeek Asia Pacific via their entry in…

read more

Attractions / Entertainment / Events / Sport / Ticketing



Ausfit began in 1992, providing software services to the health and fitness sector including ClubWise, a fully hosted web-based product which combines state of the art club management software,…

read more

Billing / Finance / Fitness / Technology


Worldwide Sports Management

Principal Consultant Simon Weatherill has spent the last 20 years developing the world renowned Melbourne Sports Hub, as former Chief Executive Officer of the State Sports Centres Trust…

read more

Aquatics / Consultants / Recreation / Sport / Venues



Hidroplay welcomes you to the exciting world of children's Playscapes, waterslide's and Water Attractions. Appealing to families, Hidroplay increases patronage in your facility during those…

read more

Aquatics / Play / Recreation


ProSlide Technology

ProSlide is the global leader in water ride design and manufacturing, supplying high-performance water attractions to new and expanding water parks around the world. For over three decades, ProSlide…

read more

Aquatics / Play / Waterparks


Pricemark Pty Ltd

Pricemark supplies a wide range of custom branded membership & RFID access products for the Health & Leisure Industry. 

read more




Developed in Europe, this innovative system offers a safety management solution for swimming pools that checks individual swimmers via their wristband - monitoring their depth and time. Sensors…

read more

Aquatics / Hospitality / Safety / Technology / Waterparks


Centaman Entrance Control

Turnstile Entry Systems and Access Control Centaman Entrance Controls’ Award Winning Range of Access Control Systems includes tripod & triarm turnstiles, speedgates, full height…

read more

Access / Entertainment / Sport / Ticketing / Venues


get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business