Making sustainability a core business objective in sport

Making sustainability a core business objective in sport

Episode #47 – Sports For Future founder Stefan Wagner discusses Germany’s climate and sport movement, and how he has helped TSG Hoffenheim build its strategy around sustainable development

There is a section of German football fans that dislike Bundesliga team TSG Hoffenheim by virtue of the fact that it’s owned by billionaire SAP founder Dietmar Hopp. In a nation where fan ownership is a big part of football culture, some supporters believe it signals growing commercialisation of the sport.

However, when it comes to sustainability and governance, TSG Hoffenheim is among the pacesetters in European football – perhaps even sport in general.

Last year, before the coronavirus pandemic began and subsequent lockdowns stopped fans from attending matches, the club launched a simple but innovative climate ticket, in which spectators could add €1 onto their ticket price to buy a tree for a reforestation project in Uganda.

The club has also built its sponsorship offer around social and environmental consciousness, and has established a sustainable clothing brand by investing in African businesses.

Stefan Wagner, the sustainability and sports marketing expert, is behind much of this work. In this episode, he talks about his collaboration with the Bundesliga club and reflects on his wider project, Sports For Future, which aims to put sport right at the heart of climate action.

During the podcast, Wagner explains:

– How he supported TSG Hoffenheim with integrated sustainability into its core business

– Why sport is a key industry to accelerate mass decarbonisation

– What his new project – the German government- and FC Bayern Munich-backed Sports 4 Trees – is aiming to achieve

Listen to the full episode here:

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