SPORTSassist 'to revolutionise the way clubs are funded'

A new initiative organised by law firm Caesar and Howie is hoped to make sweeping changes to the way that amateur sports clubs are funded.

SPORTSassist is intended to provide the many clubs which struggle for sufficient funding with a means to support their activities, while offering marketing opportunities for their sponsors.

The scheme works by clubs receiving a share of profits garnered by their marketing efforts, in place of the traditional flat sponsorship fee.

It is hoped that, by offering sponsors an opportunity to gain increased business through the activities of club members, the days of intermittent and unreliable funding of amateur clubs could be brought to a close.

David Borrowman, formerly a rugby player at Edinburgh Wanderers who heads up the SPORTSassist initiative and is managing partner at solicitors Caesar and Howie, told Renfrewshire World: "On a personal level, my family and I have been involved with sports clubs at all levels for as long as I can remember.

"Although my rugby-playing days are now long behind me, I have seen my children’s sports clubs facing exactly the same struggles for new strips, equipment, transport and practice facilities as my club did 30 years ago."

He added that he and his partners had spent a significant period seeking out viable, consistent funding methods, culminating in the creation of SPORTSassist.

"If clubs can motivate their officials and their members, they can create continuing revenue streams," he explained.

"This is self-help, not pleading with others for awards or money.

"If clubs and officials have the same passion for sport as we have, funding problems for clubs can be resolved permanently."

The services of SPORTSassist are available to amateur clubs throughout Scotland.

Recent activities by the organisation have included brokering a sponsorship deal between Edina Hibs boys’ club and Rothco, as well as the creation of the Scottish Premier Hockey League.