Last updated 25 October 2021

Sponsorship is invariably the purchase of advertising or other similar services by the sponsor. The relationship between the promoter and the sponsor is always contractual, and it is important when drawing up these contracts that the specific advertising or service be precisely included in the contract. This protects both sponsor and promoter.

Sponsorship of sporting events is an important vehicle used by businesses to create brand awareness, and sponsors are prepared to pay large sums of money to have their brand and the event linked together. A problem for a promoter is the protection of the sponsor against ambush marketing. This occurs where an unrelated organisation markets its product or service in a manner that gives the appearance of being officially associated with an event, when in fact this is not the case (e.g. through using billboards outside the event stadium or aerial blimps and skywriting). An ambush marketer attempts to obtain the benefits of being an official sponsor of an event without paying licence or sponsorship fees sought by the organiser. Part 4B of the Major Sports Facilities Act 2001 (Qld), and pt 5 div 3 subdiv 3 of the Major Events Act 2014 (Qld) are legislative attempts to restrict the opportunities for ambush marketing at major sporting events. It is highly likely that special-purpose legislation will be passed in the future to protect the 2032 Brisbane Olympic Games.