Programme 2023

The SPORTO programme delivers a 360-degree insight into the industry trends. Case studies, discussions and in-depth one-on-one interviews create the content at the crossroads of relevant industry areas with a focus on sponsorship strategy and activation, branding and building brand equity, digital communication and innovation, Olympic marketing, fan engagement and other specific topics with one touch point – harnessing the power of sport.

Wednesday, February 22


09:00 – 09:30
Check-in, welcome reception, coffee and networking
09:30 – 10:05
SPORTO Talk: Johan Eliasch
1-on-1 with Johan Eliasch | FIS, President

This session offers a chance to reflect on the role of the International Ski and Snowboard Federation (FIS) as the guardian of snow sports and hear Johan Eliasch’s thoughts on how recent changes in the sports, economic and environmental ecosystem will impact the future of the FIS and the world of snow sports.
10:05 – 10:40
Planica 2023 & the World of Winter Sports Marketing
Stefan Krauss I Infront Sports & Media, VP Winter sports
Satu HärkönenI Stora Enso, Head of Media Finland
Enzo Smrekar I Slovenian Ski Association, President
Welcome to FIS Nordic World Ski Championships Planica 2023. The day after the opening ceremony, this session offers a view into the championship from the marketing, sponsorship and sustainability perspective and a discussion on the wider ecosystem of winter sports marketing.
10:40 – 11:15
Think Forward: Emergent Trends in Digital Sports Culture
Joe Weston | We Are Social, Head of Sport
As our culture moves at the speed of social media, Joe Weston from We Are Social Sport dives into the major cultural trends affecting the sports industry in 2023. Joe will outline what marketers need to know, and how to capitalise on them to ensure sports brands, bodies and organisations produce the best creative work.
11:15 – 11:35
Coffee break
11:35 – 12:10
Special Guest: Michael Payne
The Future of the Business of Sport and the Olympic Movement
1-on-1 with Michael Payne | Payne Media Strategies, CEO
The Olympic marketing mastermind Michael Payne shares his thoughts on the future of the sports business, with a particular focus on the ever-changing world of the Olympic movement – from new sports to city bids; broadcasts to sponsorships and the role of athlete marketing.
12:10 – 12:45
Venezia FC – Football on Water
Gianluca Santaniello | Venezia FC, Director of Business Area
Venezia FC is going through one of the most emphatic repositionings in recent football history, allying its identity more closely with the city’s reputation for classical art, architecture and innovation. During Gianluca Santaniello’s time performing the role, he supported the ownership group in translating this vision in effective operating model.
12:45 – 14:30
Lunch break (ground floor)
14:30 – 15:05
The Power of Purpose and Moving at the Speed of Fans
Amar Singh | MKTG Sports + Entertainment, Head of Content & Communications
Why has purpose-driven marketing grown so rapidly in sport in recent years and what can we expect from this trend moving forward as fan expectations and behaviour continue to shift. Amar Singh explores the factors at play and sets out a framework for success.
15:05 – 15:40
Building a Compelling Sponsorship Platform
Jill Downey | Core Sponsorship, Chief Sponsorship & Sustainability Officer
Jill Downey from Core Sponsorship will share the insights behind creating the communication platforms for the award-winning sponsorships: #Outbelieve, Sky Ireland’s sponsorship of women’s Football Association of Ireland & #ReadersWanted for An Post sponsorship of Irish Book Awards.
15:40 – 16:15
Athletes as Country Brand Ambassadors
Karmen Novarlič | Slovenian Tourist Board, Head of Business Communication Dpt.
Tina Maze | Alpine Skiing Great and ambassador of I Feel Slovenia
Slovenian Tourist Board’s approach to cooperation and endorsements with top Slovenian athletes with the aim to promote the country as a tourist destination, followed by 1-on-1 talk with Tina Maze, Alpine Skiing Champion and one of the most marketable athletes in the Alpine Skiing world.
16:15 – 16:40
Coffee break
16:40 – 17:10
Creating Digital User Journeys
Nika Kunstelj | adidas Runtastic, Marketing Manager
This session offers insights from one of the leading running and training apps: how to create engaging digital user journeys and the use of storytelling, trends in running and fitness communities, the role of membership, as well as key take-aways from the Run for the Oceans campaign.
17:10 – 17:45
Sport on TikTok: 2023 and Beyond
Arthur Guisasola | TikTok, Global Partner Manager, Sport
In this session, Arthur from the global sports team at TikTok covers TikTok’s sports vision and showcases some case studies of their work in sport, as well as share tips on what type of sport content works on the platform.
17:45 – 18:00
2022 SPORTO Awards
Winners presentation and awards ceremony.
18:00 – 19:30
Dinner snack & SPORTO Get-together
Event closing

The above programme is subject to change and slots may be interchanged.