The Jockey Club made its first foray into consumer finance earlier this year with the first retail bond offer in British sport.
The largest commercial group in British horse racing, which owns racecourses including Aintree and Newmarket, launched a comms programme in conjunction with MRM to raise more than £15m in capital that would go towards the funding of its development at Cheltenham Racecourse.
The PR team used media relations, customer comms and a Google AdWords campaign to generate mass awareness with potential investors.
It also educated people about retail bonds, reassured them of the company’s financial security and explained how the money would go to good use. The campaign also set expectations from the start by communicating widely a £15m target, not the maximum £25m the group could issue.
The campaign was a resounding success. Solely through comms, The Jockey Club Racecourse Bond raised £15m in little more than three weeks, and £24.7m in total at the closing deadline. This made it the second-largest unlisted retail bond ever issued in the UK and the largest in sport.
"Strong business results from a strong, multifaceted campaign. Good momentum-building and internal challenge expertly overcome"
Steven Spurr COO, Edelman