Friday 30 September 2016

This will be the richest Euros ever and the FAI are primed to rake in a healthy windfall

Kelli O’Keeffe, PSG Sponsorship

Published 18/11/2015 | 17:08

16 November 2015; FAI Chief Executive John Delaney celebrates in the dressingroom after the game. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Play-off, 2nd Leg, Republic of Ireland v Bosnia and Herzegovina. Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE
16 November 2015; FAI Chief Executive John Delaney celebrates in the dressingroom after the game. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifier, Play-off, 2nd Leg, Republic of Ireland v Bosnia and Herzegovina. Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE

Picture this…If Ireland was to win Euro 2016, the FAI would land a minimum of a €35m windfall. Music to Abbotsotown ears.

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Next year’s bigger and better Euro 2016, will see 24 teams compete in a tournament with €300m worth of prize money. This will be the richest Euros ever.

France is a 'top 5' European nation, and therefore the next Euros will have €500m worth of revenue through TV and sponsorship primarily. This is a massive jump form 2012 and the €300m revenue generated from Poland and Ukraine. This revenue enables more prize money for those competing.

Ireland will get €12m for just turning up, making Super Jonny Walters’ goals the most lucrative in Irish football history.

Our earning potential is huge, and the FAI will likely pocket anything in the region of €20m or more.  Our home friendlies are likely to be full houses, the new jersey, due out in April, will fly off the shelves and everyone associated with Irish football should see a boost.

It has been a good few weeks for John Delaney and company.

A €8.9m extension of the Three Mobile deal to 2020 has been followed by qualification. Sponsorship money will likely roll in too from the 17 or so FAI partners. Re-negotiation of deals will never be easier.

However, qualification comes with a cost. Training camps, admin costs and player bonuses will eat into the windfall. The prize money will take a chunk out of the FAI’s well reported debt of over €40m, which has already been drastically reduced through UEFA money and a clever debt renegotiation. Hopefully the fresh money will trickle down to grassroots and League of Ireland prize money and investment in promotion of the game.

The FAI are not the only winners.

Aer Lingus and Ryanair will see traffic volumes jump next summer to France and surrounding countries. Aer Lingus intends to out on 160 flights a week to France next summer, with 2016 venues Bordeaux, Toulouse, Marseilles, Paris, Nice and Lyon all on the list. Aer Lingus also goes to Brussels up to 3 times a day, which is near Lille and Lens. Irish Ferries and Brittany Ferries and others are likely to be brimful of campervans and cars decked out in green.

Umbro have the contract to manufacture the new kit for France and will be delighted with qualification. A team jersey usually sells more than six times the normal rate during a championship year.

Sports retailers Life Style Sports and Elverys should see a big boost. Ireland’s biggest sports retailer Life Style Sports sold out of Irish Canterbury Rugby World Cup jerseys in 2015, and will likely do the same for the Euros.

RTE Sport, who have experienced a bad few weeks, will be licking their lips heading into 2016. Over 1.2m watched Ireland v Croatia in 2012 for example, and I expect even more so to tune in for our first Euro 2016. Advertising revenue will rocket too.

UEFA will be happy. Irish fans lit up the 2012 tournament and the 2015 Rugby World Cup and we have great fans who spend money, enjoy themselves and behave themselves. Major tournaments need character as well as quality and UEFA will be pleased to have Ireland on board. 

Other FAI partners will be busy preparing for June. Bank of Ireland, Lucozade Sport, Carlsberg, Celtic Pure, Spar, McDonalds, SSE Airtricity, DHL, Ford, Continental Tyres, Aviva, Nivea for Men, Heatons, EA Sports, Bus Eireann and the Irish Independent will all be celebrating having taken a chance on the emerging boys in green.

Irish fans will be chuffed, with France only a short hop away and the ticket prices are not exorbitant. The prices for the group stages start at €25 and go up to €145.

Soccer agents, sports sponsorship consultancies and others will be busy in the first half of 2016.

And don’t forget the pubs. Never forget the pubs…the party atmosphere will be a joy to behold.

Euro 2016 – 10 numbers that explain why the FAI and others will be very happy today

-  €12m - UEFA Prize Money for qualification alone (up from €8m in 2012)

- €1m -  the bonus payment for winning a match in Euro 2016

- €1m – Potential Sponsorship bonus revenue for the FAI

- €8.9m – the four year extension with 3 Mobile until 2020, which now looks great business for both parties

- 50,000 – the potential full house in the Aviva for home friendlies

-  €1.2m – Martin O’Neill’s salary. Looks like a bargain now

- €1.5m+ - the likely player bonus pool for qualification….the lads will be happy

- 160 – the number of flights every week to France that Aer Lingus will put on

- 1.2m – the number of viewers that watched Ireland’s opener versus Croatia in 2012 on RTE TV. This number is likely to be repeated.

- 17 – the number of partners and sponsors the FAI has from SPAR to DHL to Lucozade to McDonalds to BOI. They will all be delighted today.

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