Hoops a help
For six years, PostNord has been a proud sponsor of one of the most popular sports teams in Finland: the men’s basketball national team. Today, the partnership with the federation also covers the women’s team, and a special fund to help less privileged kids and young adults.
When PostNord came onboard as a sponsor of the Finnish men’s national team in basketball in 2016, it had only been three years since the brand entered the country. Partnering with the popular “Wolfpack”, as the team is nicknamed, was a great way to increase awareness of a new player in the logistics market.
“PostNord and the Wolfpack was a good match; we were both challengers, even underdogs in the market, but we were ready to work hard for success, while respecting the opponents,” says Katja Luotola, Head of People and Communications.
And that’s how PostNord’s earlier slogan “We deliver” ended up on the court and boards during the EuroBasket 2017 preliminary round games in Helsinki.
The strategy worked. The partnership has since been extended – the current contract runs through 2025 and another EuroBasket tournament with games in Finland – so that it currently also covers the women’s national team.
“After the 2017 tournament, we wanted to deepen the partnership to include more than just advertising on the team kit and the court,” Katja says.
“It came natural for us to support the Lady Wolves too as an important step for equality, even though the women’s team hadn’t had similar success. We weren’t the main sponsor at first, but now our logo is even in the front of the women’s jerseys.”
In 2019, PostNord decided to use basketball to make a difference in the society. Together with the Finnish Basketball Association, and the Finnish Basketball Foundation, PostNord started the We Deliver Fund that gives grants and financial aid for basketball related costs to young players from less privileged families.
“Many families struggle to make sure their children can keep on playing a game they love, and we all know how important it is for children to stay active. Basketball is also important for social contacts,” Katja explains.
“Children grow up fast and sometimes the decision whether a kid can keep on playing or not can come down to a pair of new sneakers. Or maybe the family can’t afford a trip to a tournament,” she adds.
Since its start in 2019, the We Deliver Fund has handed out aid eleven times, totaling more than 200,000 euro.
There have been ups and downs during the six years that PostNord has worked with the Finnish Basketball Association. The men’s team made history by finishing seventh in the
2022 EuroBasket, their best finish in 55 years. They then qualified for the 2023 FIBA Basketball World Cup for the second time – once as a host team – and as the first European country to qualify. But there’s also been a pandemic that kept children from the indoor arenas for a long time and hit some families hard, increasing the number of We Deliver applications.
“We always wanted it to grow to include other actors, and it feels good to see that it’s not only our fund, and that something we started has now grown to something bigger,” Katja says.
“I’m proud of that.”