More support for women’s and youth’s sports: VILPE and Royals expand their collaboration
The main sponsor of Wasa Royals varsity team, VILPE Oy is expanding its collaboration with the association. The company from Korsholm manufactures ventilation and special roof products and has been the main partner of Wasa Royals since 2019. Now the sponsorship has been extended to Royals juniors and the Wasa Royals women’s team.
In junior teams, the support is given to ten children who otherwise wouldn’t be able to practice American football due to seasonal fees. The support is directed to these families via Hope ry. In addition, VILPE Oy is now the main sponsor of the Royals U20 team.
“It is a very good idea from VILPE to cover the seasonal fees for less affluent children. This enables children to practice the sport they enjoy. On the other hand, the U20 team is an important milestone before the transition to the varsity team. Royal’s U20 team is the current Finnish champion in the series “, says Wasa Royals chairman Martti Kass.
The sponsorship agreement is also of great importance to the women’s team. The team that was founded in 2020 needs support, among other things, to acquire game jerseys and equipment.
“First I asked VILPE to participate as a sponsor with a small amount. I was pleasantly surprised when they wanted to be the main sponsor just like for the men’s team”, says the member of the Royal ladies’ sponsorship group Janica Nyman.
VILPE has positive experiences of the collaboration with the association.
“We have been cooperating with the Royals men’s team for a long time and it was natural for us to extend the support to the ladies and young people as well. Royals has invested a lot in the community and we appreciate that” says VILPE’s CEO Tuomas Saikkonen.
Corona has made the sponsorship situation more difficult
Kass says that the sponsorship situation has become more difficult due to the corona pandemic and some of the agreements have been put on hold, so the support from the main sponsor is now even more important.
“VILPE has, so to speak, been our mainstay as a sponsor for a long time,” Kass describes the situation.
The founder of the women’s team Milla Joensuu states that according to her experience, it’s not an easy task to get sponsors for women’s American football. Generally speaking, sponsors are get though acquaintances.
For VILPE it was an easy decision to extend the sponsorship to the women’s team and to the junior activities.
“We want to direct sport sponsorships as equally as possible. For example, last autumn we made a cooperation agreement with the gymnastics association Wasa Unique. Among gymnastics, the majority are women and girls. With the Wasa Royals sponsorship, a new women’s team receives support,” says Saikkonen.
As the main sponsor of the Royal women’s team, VILPE is the team’s biggest financial supporter. The amount of support that the women’s team receives is still smaller compared to the men’s team. The reason for this that the men play at the highest league level and the women one league level lower. In addition, the men’s games reach larger audience.
Getting a main sponsor is extremely important because money is spent on game trips and training trips, among other things. One of the women’s team’s biggest expenses is the acquisition of new game jerseys.
American football has grown in popularity in Finland over the past ten years. The sport is suitable for everyone, regardless of what sport background you have or even though you would not have practiced sports at all before.
“There is a position for everyone in the team. You always learn something new in the sport, even though you would have played for a long time. Finland is one of the top countries in women’s American football in Europe and the Finnish women’s national team is a double European champion,” says Joensuu.