Parity for female athletes: In this case it’s a liaison for sponsorship dollars

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An online sponsorship platform aims to close the pay gap in sports with one sponsored Instagram post at a time.

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Equality, founded in 2020, connects female athletes with brands and puts money in athletes’ pockets that are often overlooked in marketing conversations. company signed Partnership with WNBA Players Association in 2021 and boasts nearly 800 athletes from more than 70 sports, working with more than 30 companies ranging from major pro leagues to women playing in smaller Olympic events.

Parity is not an agency or marketing firm. Rather, it is a link helping female athletes to capitalize on the increasingly influential economy.


“The goal we’ve set for ourselves as a company is to put billions of dollars in the hands of female athletes over time,” said Alana Kasner, Parity’s vice president of content and strategy.

The long-term goal could help close a serious pay gap between the men’s and women’s sports. Today’s NBA minimum wage equals the full $1.4 million salary cap for a WNBA team, but even in 1973, in the NBA’s 26th season, the league was trailing the WNBA at the same age. In 1973, NBA players earned an average salary of $90,000, According to the New York Times, The $637,000 is still five times higher than the 2022 WNBA average of $120,648 today.

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With the WNBPA partnership, players can join Parity’s service. Athletes fill out a detailed survey, which is used to match them with suitable brands that pay for sponsored social media posts. Parity also launched series of nfts Hosts opportunities for further professional career development for athletes.


Athletes get at least one cent per follower per campaign through Parity’s paid posts. For a player like Sparks forward Katie Lou Samuelson, who has 131,000 followers on Instagram and an unsecured salary of $72,141, parity partnerships have a minimum of $1,310 per dollar.

“It gives great opportunities especially for athletes who don’t have as many followers,” Samuelson said. customized pair of shoes Designed for the 50th anniversary of Title IX in partnership with Parity and artist Katie Schaffstall, who is also the social media campaign manager at the company. “They want to find that equality for all.”

While Parity is open to all professional female athletes, it is not for the top 5% of earners, Kasner acknowledged. Top athletes who have already built up a strong support portfolio may not need the assistance of a third party.

It’s for “everyone else,” Kasner said.

This is especially helpful for many WNBA players as their salaries have yet to skyrocket and most of the marketing dollars go towards the league’s biggest stars such as former No. 1 pick Sabrina Ionescu and 2020 Most Valuable Player Eja Wilson. The role-playing giants received the least during negotiations for a 2020 collective bargaining agreement, which increased the salary cap by 31%, but increased the salaries of top players by 83% and rookies by 35.8%.

It is the mid-level players that the association has taken into account with parity partnerships.

“We want everyone’s boat to be able to get up,” said Neneka Ogwumike, President of Sparks Forward and WNBPA.

Kasner said Parity currently works with about 50 active WNBA players. Brands range from large corporations like Microsoft or Morgan Stanley looking to diversify their sponsorship spend to small startups targeting female athletes to launch their campaigns.

Kasner said the growing number of brands partnering with women during the 18 months since Parity came to market has been incredible. It was never “cool” to be a fan of the women’s game, she said, most recently, when WNBA players took the lead off the court in 2020 with rising television ratings and becoming leaders for social justice.

While many companies are only starting to pay attention, the recent success has already made Kasner and other longtime fans known.

“This stuff is great,” Kasner said. “This is where the money should be spent.”


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