North American Sponsorship Spending Forecast to Grow by 4.3% This Year

IEG-North-American-Sponsorship-Spending-2012-2014-Jan2014North American sponsorship spending will increase by 4.3% over last year’s $19.8 billion to reach $20.6 billion in 2014, according to the latest sponsorship report from IEG. This year’s forecast is more muted than last year’s, which projected an increase of 5.5%. That didn’t materialize, with total sponsorship spending in North America growing by 4.5%, per the report. As with last year, sports sponsorship spending is expected to grow most rapidly.

This year, IEG projects that North American companies’ sports sponsorship spending will grow by 4.9% to reach $14.35 billion, or about 70% of total sponsorship spending. Still, that forecast is below last year’s expectations (6%) and actual growth rate (5.1%). (An analysis of the top brands and verticals involved with US pro sports sponsorships can be found here.)

In fact, only one sponsorship category is expected to grow more quickly than it did last year: entertainment. IEG projects a 4.6% increase this year to $2.6 billion in spending (10% share of total spending); last year, entertainment sponsorship spending increased by a more muted 2.1%. Ad Age reports that the bump is primarily related to a change in definition rather than increased enthusiasm on the part of marketers, though.

Other significant categories to capture North American sponsorship spending will be:

  • Causes: +3.4% to $1.84 billion, following a 4.8% increase last year;
  • Arts: +1.4% to $927 million, following a 2.6% increase last year;
  • Festivals, fairs and annual events: +1.7% to $853 million, following a 1.7% increase last year; and
  • Associations and membership organizations: +1.4% to $576 million, following a 3.3% increase last year.

Total global spending on sponsorships is projected to reach $55.3 billion, up 4.1% from 2013.