One of the greatest difficulties facing small sports teams in France and around the globe is a lack of visibility. Each has an amazing story to tell and glorious and authentic experiences to share, but they lack the means to do so. Sarlat Rugby has defied the barriers, however, rising from relative anonymity to regional, national, and even international attention. Now other teams are starting to take note and seek out the secrets to their success.
The Bergerac Périgord Football Club was among the first to express interest, as they had been struggling in the same areas where Sarlat Rugby was shining. Now, this summer, the two teams, which might seem like unexpected allies, are launching upon a joint adventure.
With the expertise of Sarlat’s ChallengerX, a technology startup incubated and accelerated at UNIQORN, Sarlat Rugby’s flagship sponsor, both teams will showcase the potential of regional sports teams backed by the right platform (ChallengerX), starting with the announcement of a highly symbolic combined merchandise store.
Sarlat Rugby and Bergerac Périgord Football Club Merch Lands at Regional Airport
Rugby and Football have always been rivals, but now the two ambitious teams from the Périgord are presenting a common face to visitors, and they have chosen a symbolic and strategic spot to start.
The Bergerac-Roumaniere Airport, or Bergerac Dordogne Périgord Airport is the most direct route for tourists to reach the beautiful Dordogne and Périgord regions. With flights from hubs like London and Rotterdam arriving every day in summer, the traffic reaches 300,000 travelers a year. Each of these visitors will soon be spending time and/or money at the latest addition to the airport: the combined merch store for Sarlat Rugby and the BPFC.
The store, officially announced in a press conference last weekend, will showcase the quality sporting and lifestyle goods the two teams already offer. It will also be a point of contact between tourists and the sporting world of the region—a way to showcase and share the rich sports culture that plays such a defining role in our lives. Bringing revenue to the teams in the process is, of course, a welcome bonus!
The unveiling of the airport location was also the occasion for the teams to make broader announcements about their upcoming partnership, and what they hope to achieve together.
The Birth of an Unprecedented Collaboration
Impressed by Sarlat Rubgy’s digital success and marketing savvy, BPFC chairman Christophe Fauvel, along with his son Paul, sought out the growing club, and a partnership was born. Having reached out to Sarlat Rugby’s President Dom Einhorn to learn how he had managed to grow the small-town rugby team’s profile and media presence, Fauvel was impressed by what he found.
So impressed that he wanted many of the same solutions for Bergerac—his team was also struggling on the digital front. The Bergerac Périgord Football Club, an institution in the area with over 100 years of rich history, has a lot going for it. The support of the Dordogne Business Club, in particular, made up of local business partners. Their ambitions however were somewhat thwarted as the team was struggling to get its story told and to connect audiences.
That is where Sarlat Rugby, on the other hand, has been thriving, connecting with fans around the world. The team has even recently announced a pair of broadcasting partnerships with networks in the US. This international distribution will only further accelerate their growth abroad and online, which has already been remarkable, as the team is now in the top 10 French rugby clubs by Facebook following.
Sarlat Rugby, however, did not manage this alone. The work that has been done behind the scenes to help them reach these unprecedented heights could be done for others. And that is the premise behind the authors of this new partnership: ChallengerX.
ChallengerX Offers Solutions for Football and Rugby Clubs Alike
Sports teams have compelling stories to tell, as both Sarlat Rugby and Bergerac Périgord Football club can attest to. Unfortunately, they often lack the expertise to do so effectively, particularly with the large scale and technological aptitude required for successful communication online. This is where ChallengerX steps in to help.
With the backing of the UNIQORN incubator run by Dom Einhorn in Sarlat, this strategic digital sports consulting startup has already proven its potential. Their success at taking Sarlat Rugby global – and digital – has demonstrated the potency of a digitally empowered brand. With marked increases in media attention both on and offline, as well as the unlocking of major new high potential revenue streams, there is a lot going for Sarlat Rugby.
These new advantages are what drew in Bergerac Périgord Football Club. After all, the tools that ChallengerX is developing are not dependent on the sport, in fact, they plan to open their services to any and all. So, unexpected as the collaboration of rugby and football might be, there is actually substantial room for lessons to be learned, shared, and profited from by both.
There is an additional benefit of working together to rise in visibility and rank for both teams. As they are neighbors, their collective work, and that of ChallengerX behind the scenes, will serve to draw attention, nationally and internationally for the region’s sports teams. As people take more of an interest, the teams themselves will have more to strive for, and more to gain. Ultimately, they are bringing additional revenue far beyond those of the airport store. Nevertheless, the physical store will be a bold declaration of the partnership, a visible testament to its potential, and an additional reminder of what the Périgord has to offer sports fans around the world.