This study demonstrates that a recent development in the strategic management literature, the resource-based view of the firm, has great utility for furthering our understanding of sport sponsorship. The paper provides a theoretical framework to explain the application of the approach to sponsorship. Illustration and greater insight are then provided through the presentation of two case studies. These are used to identify the salient characteristics of agreements made by two international companies, each of which has been extensively involved in sport sponsorship but with varying degrees of success. The resource-based approach is used to demonstrate that the disparate returns of the companies' sponsorship investments could have been anticipated. As such, as well as providing a conceptual extension to the sponsorship literature, the paper also offers a route for more empirical analyses of potential sponsorship opportunities.
John Amis is with the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation at the University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB T6G 2H9. Narayan Pant is with the National University of Singapore. Trevor Slack is with the School of Physical Education, Sport, and Leisure at DeMontfort University, Bedford, UK MK40 2BZ.