Workshops for Members of the IFSC were first provided at the annual IFSC Plenary Assembly in 2017 in Quebec City. Following the success of the interactive gatherings, the concept was continued this year at the Austria Trend Hotel Congress in Innsbruck with a new cast of experienced speakers and fresh topics.
The first workshop in the morning covered working with sponsorship agencies to improve the value of Sport Climbing and generate revenues. Keiichi Nakano from the Sports Division of Hakuhodo DY media partners and Daisuka Niwa, Deputy General Manager of the Sports Division, presented on the strategic goals of sponsorships for emerging sports. Preserving the integrity of a sport while raising its profile was identified as the main goal, building real partnerships which support all the intertwining areas of a sport to do so. Differentiation of sponsorship packages for events was also emphasized, to create clear and fair relationships with partners.
Michael Schöpf, Sport Manager of Austria Climbing and CEO of IFSC World Championships Innsbruck 2018, continued the exchange of ideas alongside Ben Lepesant, Head of Media & Communications at Austria Climbing and Innsbruck 2018, focusing on the practical aspects of attracting and sustaining relationships with sponsors from an event organiser perspective.
Ben Lepesant presenting at an IFSC Plenary Assembly workshop.
In the afternoon, National Federations engaged in a round table discussion during the second workshop on long-term planning and effective business models for hosting international events. Michael Schöpf and IFSC Event Officer Alessandro di Cato offered key insight, ranging from establishing an exciting sport atmosphere for the right audience to encouraging participation of political institutions and overcoming financial barriers with limited resources. The significant economic impact of athletes, officials, representatives, press and fans on the local economy was identified, and participating representatives of National Federations spoke from their unique experiences about the challenges of integrating sport, political and economic visions.
"The workshop this afternoon was a great opportunity to share experiences and give insight to other National Federations and event organisers about organising an IFSC World Cup and the IFSC World Championships,” said Michael Schöpf in the afternoon session. "Looking forward into the future, this is surely a good starting point."
In the evening, the delegates visited the venue of the upcoming IFSC World Championships on September 6-16, stopping by the towering walls of Kletterzentrum Innsbruck where the IFSC Youth World Championships took place last year.