Karma Club

Beach_905 If you think football is all about overpaid players and glossy WAGs, it’s time to think again. It can, believe it or not, actually be used to do some good, as proved by Danish sports brand Hummel and their Karma United initiative. We sent Caroline Freestone to catch up with the brand’s resident ‘Karma developer’ Dan Bjerg to find out how they’re changing the world, one kick at a time. “When I started at Hummel in 2011 my mission was to build the company karma and for it to be part of the brand’s DNA,” explains Bjerg. This ‘karma’ was all part of an initiative from father and son co-owners Thor and Christian Stadil to ‘change the world through sport.’ Hummel_bike_905 On a day-to-day basis, this means working globally on numerous projects Hummel have in the pipeline in countries all over the world, from Afghanistan to America. “As a Karma developer, no two days are alike,” Bjerg notes. “Today I’m having a meeting with the marketing and sales director in Moscow about how Orange Karma (orange is Hummel’s trademark colour) is going out to the media. I also have conferences with partners in both Sierra Leone and Afghanistan. ” In all aspects of the job, best practise is just as important as business. “I try to bridge between social innovations and marketing by building these relationships with NGOs,” Bjerg explains, “In short, I am trying to do business by doing good.”

This philanthropical approach seems to be working. The projects in war-torn Sierra Leone and Afghanistan both stem from partnering with NGOs to sponsor the countries’ national football teams, which has resulted in recognition on an international level from FIFA. “We go far beyond the normal relationship with NGOs,” Bjerg continues. “I call them partnerships rather than sponsorships because we actually work really closely with the NGOs that use sport as a tool for change, and apply the Karma mission so we work towards the same goal.” Hummel_Pitch_905 This mission is clearly working. Since 2008 the number of people involved in Karma projects has leapt from 350 to 255,000 in 2013 and new projects are on the horizon everywhere from Japan to Germany. “Karma United is a team anyone can join,” Bjerg says. “We want to make an engaging platform for customers or anyone who wants to tag along and support us.” We bet it won’t be long until that figure of 255,000 people becomes even bigger. Click here to see the map of Karma United projects and become an ambassador. Shop Hummel now:

Leave a Reply