PENNY renews as Main Sponsor for FC Energie Cottbus ahead of time

Infront Sports & Media facilitates the partnership renewal between the discount store chain and the 2nd league club

Frankfurt am Main / Cottbus, Germany – The discount store chain PENNY has renewed its contract as Main Sponsor of FC Energie Cottbus ahead of time. This secures the brand’s place on the shirts of the ambitious 2nd league team during the 2010/2011 German Bundesliga season. The contract renewal has been announced today by the parties involved. The parties agreed to keep contract negotiation details confidential.

PENNY has been taking advantage of its position as Main Sponsor to FC Energie Cottbus since August 2009 by focusing its activities on the fans. In addition to shirt sponsorship, various fan activities were arranged at the “Stadion der Freundschaft” (Stadium of Friendship) during the first half of the 2009 season including product placements and competitions.

PENNY reinforces its brand appeal

“We are delighted with our FC Energie Cottbus collaboration. By extending the contract ahead of time, we are sending another positive message about our commitment to the eastern German states to both the club and fans. Our goal is to further strengthen the PENNY brand in the east by appealing to the emotions of the fans. The fans' response to our home game activities shows us that we are right on track,” explains Armin Rehberg, Member of the Executive Board of REWE Group, responsible for discount store business, after today’s announcement of the contract renewal.

The president of Energie, Ulrich Lepsch, is also very satisfied by the arrangement: “PENNY is doing an exemplary job as sponsor and has injected a lot of energy into the partnership; the collaboration is very beneficial for both sides. Having a company like PENNY on board is an affirmation of our continuing development. The success of PENNY in other regions is an additional motivator for the upcoming season. We are very thankful to have a reliable partner and to be able to plan ahead with confidence,” commented Ulrich Lepsch the renewal.

Diverse advertising and PR

In addition to shirt sponsorship, PENNY has engaged in a range of advertising and PR activities, including board advertising in camera view, a comprehensive logo presence in and around the stadium, advertising on the team bus and the provision of tickets to matches as prizes for promotional competitions. The goal of the wide-reaching marketing concept is to provide fans, customers and staff with an attractive package that goes far beyond normal sponsorship.

“We’re delighted that our involvement has laid the foundation for FC Energie to continue their sporting success – the team has great potential. The excitement that FC Energie is working with sets an example in the region beyond football. At the same time, we see parallels between football and the discount store business - in both it is important to be quick, creative, direct, and sometimes, to endure international hard play from competitors. Nevertheless, fairness and being a team player are two qualities central to success,” says Rehberg.

Infront Germany provided support

“Extending the partnership with FC Energie Cottbus ahead of time is a logical step for PENNY. Ultimately, we could see the results following the first half of the season. The first unprompted surveys indicate that the perception of PENNY as the shirt sponsor of Energie developed positively after just a few months. This success is primarily due to the excellent cooperation and the way sponsorship activities have been implemented," adds Reinhardt Weinberger, Managing Director at Infront Germany. In August 2009, the international sports marketing agency procured PENNY as the Main Sponsor of FC Energie Cottbus and has now also provided support for the extension.

By showing its commitment to football in Cottbus, PENNY again emphasises the importance of eastern German states in the discount store chain’s national expansion strategy. This year alone, the discount store chain is investing tens of millions to open new warehousing space. PENNY is one of the leading discount store chains in Germany, operational in 2,400 locations with revenue of 6.3 billion euro and 600 locations in East Germany alone.

About Infront Germany

Infront Germany, based in Frankfurt/Main, is one of the leading companies in the stadium advertising business in Germany, with a successful track record dating back 30 years. It currently markets the commercial rights of seven clubs in Germany, including four Bundesliga clubs, Werder Bremen (Weser-Stadion, stadium advertising), FC Schalke 04 (Veltins Arena, stadium advertising), VfL Bochum (rewirpowerSTADION, stadium advertising) and SC Freiburg (badonova-Stadion, major commercial rights), as well as three clubs of the 2. Bundesliga - Energie Cottbus (Stadion der Freundschaft, shirt sponsorship), Fortuna Düsseldorf (Esprit Arena, stadium advertising) and Hansa Rostock (DKB-Arena, complete marketing). In Rostock, Infront Germany also offers first-class hospitality opportunities. During the 2008/2009 season, Infront successfully distributed media and marketing rights to the UEFA Cup home matches of the national champion VfL Wolfsburg.