During the COVID-19 pandemic, ASB were challenged to step up to plate for small businesses. So we thought, what if we fronted up with one of the most tightly regulated sponsorship properties in the world?


increase in Brand Love


increase in Business customers 


organic media reach


As Covid-19 ravaged the world, the economic impacts of the pandemic presented a clear and present danger to New Zealand; with a first ever lockdown gripping the nation.

The banking industry was challenged by Government to play its rightful role in helping Kiwi navigate these unprecedented times, and we knew providing financial support wasn’t going to cut it.

We needed something bigger that would go beyond the financial because:

  • 56% of NZ SME’s were closed or partially trading
  • 38% of NZ SME’s were completely closed
  • A further 38% said optimising short term sales was critical


When almost every bank came out saying “we’re here to help” ASB decided to do more. We knew we had the talent available, ASB’s biggest sponsorship asset – the All Blacks.

We gave 100’s of small businesses the chance to use the All Blacks to help them get back on their feet. ASB assembled the largest contingent of NZ rugby players ever - representing the All Blacks, Māori All Blacks and Black Ferns – and conceived, planned, and executed 100 bespoke marketing campaigns for small businesses in NZ.

Also, for the first time in 117 years we gave away our secured naming rights for NZ’s most iconic sports stadium, Eden Park, to a small fish shop in Kaikoura. Our ‘ah-ha’ moment


We created 100 unique media campaigns designed to help deliver a key message from our business driving people in store, online, or just help getting more business coming through the door. The campaign saw:

  • 1,700 applications to borrow the All Blacks
  • 70,000 visits to the ASB Business Hub online
  • 24.3% increase in Business customers from 1 October 2020 to 31 January 2021 (compared to same period previous year)
  • Organic media reach of 25.8M through 117 media items (locally and globally) with over $3 million in earned media value for Coopers Catch Fish and Chips.

All businesses that won the competition and borrowed the All Blacks said they saw increase in digital engagement