As 2021 comes to a close, Insider Sport looks through the year to highlight major news that you might have missed in the sports world. 

September and October had its fair share of sports sponsorships as the 2021/22 football season got well underway.

Turkish grocery delivery service, Getir, signed a three-year agreement to become Tottenham Hotspur’s new and first-ever training wear partner, increasing its commitment to the club as an official global partner, whilst ITV became the new home for the Lionesses.

Football betting sponsorships continued to soar in September as UEFA signed a double tournament sponsorship deal with bwin, and Betway netted exposure through its Atlético de Madrid partnership.

Furthemore, sports data and technology company Sportradar moved forward with its launch of an Initial Public Offering (IPO) on the Nasdaq Global Market, offering 19 million shares, as the firm aimed to raise an initial $504 million through floating of the shares at a price of between $25 and $28.

The same week, Formula One and Motorsport Network united to launch the ‘world’s largest’ F1 fan survey. In partnership with Nielsen, the survey aimed to capture the current views, towards the sport, of F1 fans around the world, and was expected to be the largest fan survey of its kind.

“By utilising the power of Motorsport Network, we will be able to reach fans across the globe providing us with invaluable insight about what our audiences want from our sport and areas that we can improve in the future,” commented Ellie Norman, F1 Director of Marketing.

In other news, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) suspended North Korea’s membership, barring the country from the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, due to its refusal to send a team to the Tokyo 2020 Summer Games.

Thomas Bach, President of the IOC, also confirmed that the North Korean Olympic Committee would not receive any financial support throughout the suspension. 

In a statement, the IOC commented: “The IOC provided reassurances for the holding of safe Games and offered constructive proposals to find an appropriate and tailor-made solution until the very last minute (including the provision of vaccines), which were systematically rejected.”

In the new era of social media, Leeds United teamed up with TikTok to become the world’s first ever football club to sell official merchandise on the platform in the e-commerce partnership.

“We’ve seen huge engagement on TikTok since we launched on the platform, by integrating our retail products with TikTok, we hope to not only attract new audiences for Leeds United but also provide a seamless shopping experience for fans,” said Aaron Duckmanton, Leeds’ Global Head of Digital. 

In new hopes for the end of COVID-19, the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) published its fixture list for the 2022 season, which increased the number of weekend meetings in plans to boost racecourse attendance, betting handles and television viewership.

As it kept in mind the need to drive revenues and engagement in the post-COVID era, with weekend fixtures easier for much of the general public to attend, the BHA made the decision to add a sixth race across ten Saturday and eight Sunday meetings throughout the season.

Similarly, the NTT IndyCar Series also released its 2022 schedule with a record number of 14 out of 17 races to be broadcast on NBC, including its earliest season opener in 19 years.

Further US sports developments saw he National Hockey League’s (NHL) Pittsburgh Penguins announce Bold Penguin, an insurance technology provider, as its official helmet partner starting from the 2021/22 season. Furthermore, Intuit signed a 23year agreement to hold the official naming rights of the Intuit Dome – the home of the National Basketball Association‘s (NBA) LA Clippers from 2024.

With the 2005 Gambling Act reviews continuing, it started to look likely that the UK will see changes to gambling advertising regulations, whilst it was also reported that the impact of pitchside and television advertising is also being considered.

At this time, Bolton Wanderers FC announced an important decision to cut all on-site betting advertisements at the University of Bolton Stadium, or enter into any new commercial partnerships and sponsorships with gambling industry firms.

Sharon Brittan, Bolton Wanderers’ Chairman, commented: “Problem gambling ruins lives and we’ve taken this stance to show our support for those who are suffering from a betting addiction.” 

The club cited research which suggests that there are between 340,000 and 1.4 million adult gambling addicts in the UK and over 60,000 young people aged between 11 and 16 are addicted.

The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) also made a decision to place Sorare’s fantasy football platform under investigation.  

The commission confirmed that it was evaluating the fantasy football game and digital collectables platform, with regards to whether the business was required to operate under a licence. 

A statement from the company followed: “We are very confident Sorare does not offer any forms of regulated gambling. This has been confirmed by expert legal opinions at every stage since the company was founded, including during a number of fundraising rounds.”

However, in German football, the Bundesliga signed an agreement with Sorare to be part of a Non-Fungible Token (NFT) fantasy game in a bid to reach more fans, whilst Endpoint CeX, in partnership with Chiliz, announced its launch of a $ENDCEX Fan Token on

October concluded with DraftKings announcing a deal with the NHL to become its official sports betting, daily fantasy Sports and igaming Partner in the US.

Speaking to Insider Sport on the deal, Matthew McEwan, Editor-in-Chief and Senior Sports Betting Analyst for, said: “DraftKings will certainly hold an advantage over their competitors when it comes to NHL betting. With fans seeing and hearing the brand while watching the games, it’ll be an easy decision for any new bettor looking to make a wager.

We are currently seeing the beginning of that major sports marketing push from US-facing operators. The NFL currently has several sports betting partners. 

“With so many states yet to legalise sports betting / become operational, including all of the big four (CA, TX, FL, and NY), operators are looking for any and all opportunities to gain an advantage as we head into 2022, when a handful more states are expected to launch sports betting.”

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