Plus500 teams up with Italian club Atalanta to target fans
SPREAD betting firm Plus500 has signed a sponsorship deal with Italian football side Atalanta as trading and cryptocurrency platforms continue to target sports fans.
The FTSE 250 firm announced a three-year deal to become the main shirt sponsor of the Italian club, which reached the quarter-finals of the UEFA Champions League.
It marks Plus500’s continued expansion into the sport, where it already sponsors Atletico Madrid, one of Spain’s most successful sides in the past decade, and has announced tieups with clubs in Poland and Switzerland. The contract terms were not disclosed. Plus500’s rival eToro partnered with six Premier League clubs last season while players at Sheffield United, Watford and Wolverhampton Wanderers all carried logos of cryptocurrency or brokerage firms on their sleeves. The spread betting and online investment industry’s increasing interest in sport, where gaming and gambling firms spend heavily on promotion, could spark concern that consumers will be put at risk.
Online trading firms enjoyed a boom during the pandemic as punters flocked to the sites due to volatile markets and bookmakers being unable to offer bets while sports events were banned during lockdown.
In November, a cross-party parliamentary report called for spread betting to be regulated by the Gambling Commission instead of the Financial Conduct Authority, which regulates investment firms. Spread betters should follow the same social responsibility protections as bookies, the report found. Plus500 said sports sponsorship had boosted its brand recognition and customer numbers.
Atalanta, celebrating Mario Pasalic’s goal during the UEFA Champions League quarter-final against Paris Saint-Germain, will wear shirts sponsored by spread betting firm Plus500