Huge Investments in Women’s Football

Fan interest and commercial investment in women’s football, or football, is on the rise ahead of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, women’s football, bringing the latest payment technology to all locations and offering exclusive experiences to consumers and customers around the world.

As the Women’s World Cup takes place in Australia and New Zealand in 2023, the first time the tournament has been hosted in two countries and expanded to 32 teams, Visa will bring a similarly unique experience to football fans across the country. World activates the Player of the Match reward and includes the Team Visa program for female players. The first-ever sponsorship of the 2023 Women’s World Cup completes its global investment in women’s football, including its pioneering partnership with UEFA Women’s Football and sponsorship of the US Football Federation, including the US Women’s Team and the Šebelives Cup. This investment builds on Visa’s long-term commitment in Europe and worldwide to raise women’s football and achieve greater equality in sport. 

Barclays will invest over £30 million in women’s and women’s football between 2022 and 2025, doubling existing investments and setting a new investment record for UK women’s sports. Kelly Simmons, director of the FA Women’s Professional Game, said: “Barclays has been instrumental in the growth of women’s and women’s football, so it’s great news that they are committed to new record-breaking investment in the women’s and women’s pyramid. By 2025, Barclays will also increase its investment in developing grassroots girls by expanding its sponsorship of the FA Girls Football Schools Partnership (FAGFSP) to give girls equal access to football in schools.

Since Barclays became a FAGFSP sponsor in 2019, 9,700 new schools have joined the program, bringing the total number of schools to over 12,000. The latest agreement extends the existing sponsorship of the FA Women’s Super League from 2022 to 2025, and Barclays will also sponsor the FA Women’s Championship for the first time. The bank became WSL’s first title sponsor in 2019, offering over 10 million PS in a three-year partnership.

At the FIFA Football Conference in Milan, football’s top management once again pledged to invest $1 billion in women’s football over the next four years. FIFA reaffirmed its commitment to women’s football despite the financial fallout from the coronavirus outbreak, pledging to invest another $1 billion to help grow the sport globally. In addition to securing a $1 billion investment, FIFA also sought to allay concerns that women’s football would not be sufficiently included in its planned crisis response.

The spokesperson also said that any financial package provided by FIFA to help sport mitigate the impact of the coronavirus would consist of women’s football. FIFA has confirmed its pledged $1bn (£800m) investment in women’s football between 2019 and 2022 will not be cut. The organisation explores how it will help financially access football globally as the industry is generally struggling to cope with the coronavirus pandemic.

FIFA, for example, aims to double the participation of women in football to 60 million by 2026, while UEFA has unveiled a plan to increase funding by 50% from 2020 as it works to make football the best women’s sport in Europe. Barclays will also increase its core investment to offer football to girls in more schools. 

In sports where men’s and women’s games have similar marketing support, their commercial impact is identical. While the audience for men’s sports has dwindled over the past year and a half, interest in women’s leagues has risen rapidly and dramatically, from basketball to tennis to golf. Women, athletes and civilians alike are proving to pay upfront costs that men have always considered unnecessary because they understand the value these investments can have for the industry’s future. 

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