CHARLOTTE - Under the leadership of the NFL's International Committee, the League announced today that the Carolina Panthers have been granted International Home Marketing Area (IHMA) rights in Germany. This grants the Panthers access to Germany for marketing, fan engagement and commercialization as part of the NFL's long-term, strategic effort to build global brands and drive NFL fan growth internationally.
The Panthers are one of 18 teams granted access to 26 International Home Marketing Areas (IHMA) across eight different countries.
As part of the International HMA program, the Panthers have rights to pursue activities in Germany that are consistent with those available to the team in the Carolinas. This includes in-person and digital marketing, corporate sponsorship sales, fan events and activations, youth football activities, merchandise sales and co-marketing relationships with other sports and entertainment properties in the market.
"This is exciting for the Carolina Panthers because it is an opportunity to make the Panthers more 'local' to Germany and for us to grow in one of the top NFL markets outside of North America," said Tom Glick, president of the Carolina Panthers.
"There's an emerging and passionate NFL fan base in Germany, and we've seen that first-hand already. We've been engaging fans in Germany since 2019 through multiple German-language social media channels and a German-language section of Panthers.com, and we have a large and active fan base in the country, including many of our most loyal fans in the country's chapter of the Roaring Riot.
"We'll explore several ways to show up even more in Germany, deepening our connection with our existing fans, bringing the Carolina Panthers closer to other NFL fans in the country, and turning more German sports fans on to our great game."
The Panthers operate German-language Twitter, Instagram and Facebook accounts in addition to the German-language section of Panthers.com.
"NFL fandom begins with our clubs," said Christopher Halpin, NFL Executive Vice President, Chief Strategy & Growth Officer. "This important initiative enables NFL teams to develop meaningful, direct relationships with NFL fans abroad, driving fan growth and avidity globally. We were very pleased with the number, creativity and level of commitment of club proposals across the board in this initial application period and look forward to teams launching their efforts early next year."
Clubs can begin to activate in their awarded market(s) on January 1, 2022.
Coupled with the League's commitment to International Games – all 32 clubs will play at least one international game in the next eight seasons – the League will use its best efforts to ensure clubs play their international games in their International HMAs, where possible.