Small businesses emerge as big supporters of local sport: COSBOA report

The Council of Small Businesses of Australia (COSBOA) has published a report on sponsorship of local sports teams across Australia, finding small to medium businesses are financially backing clubs in earnest.

Having canvassed 65 local soccer organisations across Australia, COSBOA finds more than 90% were supported by a local small business.

Many clubs were sponsored by multiple firms in what COSBOA chief executive Peter Strong says is evidence independent firms are putting their money in to enrich their communities.

Strong suggests the exercise is an attempt to help redefine the narrative about small business in Australia from merely its importance to the economy to its importance for local communities as well.

“We know how important small business is for the economy and for jobs — small business people contribute so much more. Sport is a quintessential part of our culture and our communities,” Strong says.

“Whether it be netball, rugby of some sort, AFL, darts, bowls, soccer and so forth. They are often sponsored by a business like a cafe, a panel beater, real estate agent, a franchisee of some sort, hairdressers, newsagents, pie shops and so forth. Families need sport and sport needs us and we need families.”

COSBOA identified butchers, bookkeeping businesses and barbershops as common sponsors for local sports clubs, while there are also plenty of franchised chains like McDonald’s on the list.

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