Millwall Turns to Prostate Cancer UK for Headline Sponsor after Rejecting QuickQuid

June 26, 2013

Millwall FC have signed on national charity Prostate Cancer UK to be its headline sponsor for the forthcoming season days after reportedly rejecting a deal with payday lender QuickQuid. 

According to the Guardian, Millwall turned down QuickQuid, a company that advertises its short-term rates at “only” 1,734% APR, as they felt it would take advantage of their working-class support.

But Nigel Currie a Director at brandRapport and expert in sports sponsorship believes payday lenders have been badly represented.

He told iSportconnect: “I think it is a reflection of the extremely  poor PR and image that payday lenders currently have.  There are alcohol brands which if used, could potentially ruin your heath or lifestyle and gaming companies that through betting with them could cause financial problems with all the knock on effects that come with this. 

“However payday lenders have this image of being exploiters of disadvantaged people and that would appear to carry much more weight than the perils of alcohol or gambling.  I believe that the clubs are reacting to popular opinion and are making the decision that it is not worth alienating the public and their fans.  The potential loss of income from not allowing payday lenders to become sponsors will not be sufficiently high to make it worth the backlash that the clubs would face.”

In turn Prostate Cancer UK has taken up the sponsorship gap and the Championship club has waived all commercial fees making the sponsorship free for the charity.

Lions CEO Andy Ambler said: “A motto that we have adopted at our club is ‘Football is the answer, not the problem.’ There is so much that we do, and can do more of, which enables Millwall to be a force for good. We are a family club, and like every family we know many close to us who have suffered the effects of cancer.

“If displaying the Prostate Cancer UK logo on our shirts, providing regular information in our publications and around our ground, and having health professionals available on matchdays to discuss issues in an informal setting, helps saves lives, we will have achieved something even greater than three points on a Saturday afternoon.”

Welcoming the Club’s free partnership deal – including a year’s joint fundraising effort which aims to raise some £100k to be divided between the charity and the Millwall FC Community Trust – Prostate Cancer UK’s Mark Bishop said: “Having Millwall Football Club pledge a season to fighting prostate cancer is a massive statement about how seriously they take this cause. Together, we mean to make sure everyone at the club, the fans, local residents and away supporters wise up to the most common cancer in men and can help us tackle it.

“Football is vital to us as a charity because it reaches thousands of men unreachable by conventional health messages. We’re really proud of what we and Millwall may achieve for men of all backgrounds in the season ahead.”

Millwall CEO Joins Football League Board

Millwall Chief Executive Andy Ambler has been elected to the Board of The Football League following a vote of Championship clubs.

Middlesbrough Director Keith Lamb was also re-elected to serve a further three year term.

Ambler and Lamb take their places on The Football League Board alongside Chairman Greg Clarke, Independent Non-Executive Director Richard Bowker and fellow Championship representative Shaun Harvey (Leeds United). Also on The Board are League 1 representatives John Nixon (Carlisle United), James Rodwell (Notts County) and League 2 representative Ian Lenegan (Oxford United).

Andy said: “I’m really looking forward to serving on The Football League Board. This is a real privilege both for me personally and for Millwall Football Club. I will be working closely with my fellow Board members to help take The League from strength to strength.”