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Sep 21, 2021
4 minutes read sponsors 20th Sport Industry Awards

The 20th Sport Industry Awards hosted some of the biggest names in the sporting sector to celebrate the achievements that made the headlines in commercial sport over the past year. Since COVID-19 rules were relaxed, audiences in the UK can now attend live events, so for the first time since 2019, the show was an in-person event.

Emily Jane Brown
Emily Jane Brown,
Senior Marketing Manager

In attendance were luminaries from the industry, such as Barry Hearn OBE, who was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by his son, Matchroom Sport Chairman Eddie Hearn, while England and Manchester United winger Marcus Rashford MBE shared his video acceptance speech after picking up the prestigious Integrity and Impact Award. 

Among the other notable winners were Sky Sports for Media Organisation of the Year, Sport England for Sport Organisation of the Year, and the FA scooping the Active & Wellbeing Award for its Heads Up Campaign.

Sporting heritage

The UK team were also present as part of our sponsorship of the newly-created International Creativity Award, won by LaLiga for its global ElClasico hype. has a rich and storied heritage supporting global sport, so it was a natural progression to endorse the Sports Industry Awards to recognise organisations that are changing the industry for the better through creative thought and cutting-edge fan engagement.

awards night sport industry team with the International Creativity Award winners

“ is proud to be an official partner of the Sport Industry Awards and we're excited to demonstrate our commitment to the community at such an important time,” said James Matthews, UK and Ireland Country Manager at, “As the world is opening back up to large scale events, we support the industry in its mission to deliver exceptional fan experiences.” 

Alex Coulson, Sport Industry Group Managing Director added, “ offers fantastic solutions and already have a strong track record of innovative and creative work across Europe, and now we’re proud to be partnering with the organisation and supporting it as it moves into the UK sport industry – there really is no better place to do so than at the industry’s biggest night of the year. Every year at the Awards, we’re seeing global work that is forging new creative paths for the sector, and the newly-introduced International Creativity Award was brought in to support just that. It’s brilliant, therefore, that a leader in innovation such as is on this journey with us.”

Ask me anything

In addition to our sponsorship, also launched the innovative Sport Industry Awards WhatsApp service, helping guests to easily find information about the event by scanning a QR code to chat to the Sport Industry Group on WhatsApp. Attendees asked a wide range of different questions and the WhatsApp service ended up dealing with queries such as the menu, parking, changing guest details and lost property to name a few. 

“CM and the Sport Industry Awards conceptualised and launched the WhatsApp channel in a matter of days. The event organisers wanted to take their guest experience to the next level and settled on a WhatsApp channel to do it. Guests on the night used WhatsApp to ask questions about everything from dietary requests, to location details, and even what table they’d be sitting on. The service was hugely popular on the night and leading up to it, and every question received a response within seconds using the power of the CM platform,” said Sam Windridge, Head of Commercial Development,

Coulson was excited about the prospect of exploring the technology’s potential next year and beyond, “This year, more than ever, we needed constant and reliable communications with our Sport Industry Awards guests. The WhatsApp service provided exactly that in a format that was second nature for our guests and equally easy for us as a business, reducing resource required to handle queries. Plus, we set it up very quickly so I'm excited about what else we can do with the team as we prepare for next year's Awards.” has already given the sports industry a glimpse of what its technology is capable of with its sponsorship of Circuit Zandvoort for the Formula 1 Dutch Grand Prix. We provided digital ticketing alongside a host of other technology solutions, including pre-registration fraud prevention, our powerful Customer Data Platform and our ‘Race Engineer’ Chatbot which answers fans’ questions on WhatsApp. 

If you want to communicate with your fans or customers more effectively, get in touch. We can help you figure out your next steps and show you how we help other businesses just like yours.

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Emily Jane Brown
Emily Jane Brown,
Senior Marketing Manager
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Is the Marketing Manager for the UK and Ireland at and mainly writes about the music and sports industry with a focus on attendee experience.

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