SINGAPORE: The Asian sponsorship market is expected to bounce back in 2018 following two lean years and is forecast to exceed $10bn by year end.

Latest figures from ASN, which provides industry intelligence around branded content and sponsorship in the region, indicate that the ASN Index will grow 26% this year, a turnaround from a 5.8% decline in 2017 and minimal growth of 1.4% in 2016.

In doing so, it will add almost $2.1bn to the channel, taking it through the $10bn barrier.

Live events will be the big Index driver with an 83% growth forecast, with much of that attributable to the Winter Olympics, which took place in February in South Korea, and the Asian Games, taking place in Indonesia in October.

The Winter Olympics generated $778m in sponsorship revenues from 59 international and domestic sponsors, ASN reported, and boosted South Korea’s annual sponsorship revenues by 274%.

The Asian Games, it continued, has already gathered an estimated $67.5m from 20 sponsors which will ultimately help increase Indonesia’s 2018 sponsorship revenues by 107%.

All of which is contributing to sport making a strong comeback after losing supremacy to the non-sport side of the market in 2014.

ASN noted that between 2012 and 2015, brands began to tap into the power of Branded Content (in ‘Non-sport’ rather than ‘Sport’), which resulted in the Content genre doubling in size in successive years to reach $4.72bn in 2015, or 55% of all non-traditional media spend in Asia.

But it expects that the content-sport balance will “return to parity and in 2020 it will certainly tip back to sport’s favour as the Olympics juggernaut rolls into Tokyo for the Summer Games.

“That juggernaut will also pull the overall ASN Index for Sponsorship spend higher still, where we have longer range forecasts of US$26bn for 2020,” it added.

Sourced from ASN; additional content by WARC staff