EHF-LANXESS Arena get along like house on fire



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Mens final4 to stay at Lanxess Arena Image: EHF

The European Handball Federation (EHF), the EHF Marketing, the City of Cologne (Germany), and the LANXESS Arena have agreed on an early prolongation of their agreement that sees the EHF FINAL4 Men being played in Cologne for another three years and until 2029.

‘EHF’ stated that the new deal was announced recently by the EHF President Michael Wiederer, the EHF Marketing Managing Director David Szlezak, Lord Mayor of the City of Cologne Henriette Reker, and the Managing Director of the LANXESS Arena Stefan Löcher at the opening party of the TruckScout24 EHF FINAL4 2024.

The European Handball Federation (EHF) is the umbrella organization for European handball. Founded on November 17th, 1991, it is made of 50 Member Federations and two associated federations and is headquartered in Vienna, Austria.

Vienna (Austria)-based the EHF Marketing GmbH is the marketing arm and subsidiary of the European Handball Federation (EHF). The company works closely with the marketing and media partners as well as Europe’s leading clubs to realize the full potential of handball in the international sports market. The EHF Marketing is responsible for the exploitation, organisation and promotion of the European club handball competitions.

The 20,000-capacity LANXESS Arena is an indoor arena, in Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. It is primarily used by the ice hockey team Kölner Haie which plays in the Deutsche Eishockey Liga (the highest division in German ice hockey), the professional handball club VfL Gummersbach which plays in the Handball-Bundesliga (the top German professional handball league), the professional basketball club RheinStars Köln which plays in the ProB (the third tier basketball league in Germany), and as a concert venue. The LANXESS Arena was the highest-attended arena of 2019 with 699,924 tickets sold.

The EHF Champions League is the most important club handball competition for the men’s teams in Europe and involves the leading teams from the top European nations. The competition is organized every year by the EHF. The official name for the men’s competition is the EHF Champions League Men. The official name for the men’s EHF FINAL4 is the EHF FINAL4 Men. The participating EHF FINAL4 teams are paired for the semifinals through a draw and play the last two matches of the season over a single weekend at one venue. The two semi-finals are played on a Saturday with the third-place game and the final on a Sunday.

The TruckScout24 EHF FINAL4 2024 took place on the weekend of June 8th-9th, 2024 at the impressive LANXESS Arena in Cologne, Germany.

‘EHF’ further stated that the current contract for staging the final weekend of the EHF Champions League, the premium competition of European club handball, in Cologne runs until 2026.

The success story between the EHF FINAL4 Men, the LANXESS Arena and the City of Cologne started in 2010 when the first event was held in front of a capacity crowd of 19,750 spectators.

The 2029 edition will thus mark the event’s 20th anniversary.

The perfect combination of outstanding sports and unique entertainment has become the event’s trademark which makes the world’s handball fans returning, selling out LANXESS Arena year after year and amicably dubbing it ‘Cathedral of Handball’ by the fans and the players alike.

Maintained Michael Wiederer, EHF President, “Since 2010, the City of Cologne and the LANXESS Arena have been offering a perfect environment and the best conditions for the EHF FINAL4 Men. Together, we have continuously developed the event further and turned it into a must-visit happening for every handball fan and into the ultimate goal for every player. Furthermore, Cologne has become a meeting place for the ‘who’s who of international handball’. This early contract extension underlines the immense trust between all the parties involved and we are looking forward to organizing several even more successful EHF FINAL4s together.”

Added David Szlezak, Managing Director of EHF Marketing GmbH, “Over the past 15 years, the EHF FINAL4 has established itself as the leading sports event in the European indoor sports market. This not only holds true for the outstanding quality of the sport and the entertainment on offer around the games, the EHF FINAL4 is a platform highly valued by our partners and the sponsors as it allows them in multiple and innovative ways to connect with our audience and reach the new target groups. Living up to these benchmarks and creating unforgettable experiences every year is one of our biggest incentives. This is only possible, and in no small part, thanks to the long-term partnerships we have developed and now prolonged with trusted partners including the City of Cologne and the LANXESS Arena.”

Remarked Henriette Reker, Lord Mayor of the City of Cologne, “In the City of Cologne, top handball meets enthusiastic fans. By extending the contract until 2029, the European Handball Federation is honoring the unique atmosphere that has been created at every EHF FINAL4 for the past 15 years, as well as the extensive efforts made by the City of Cologne around this event. Cologne is the perfect place for the sustainable development of handball and we will work together to continue the success story of the EHF FINAL4 in Cologne.”

Stated Stefan Löcher, Managing Director of LANXESS Arena, “On the eve of the EHF FINAL4’s 15th anniversary in Cologne, we are delighted to announce a new contract extension with the entire handball family: The EHF, the EHF Marketing and the City of Cologne. Fourteen incredible final tournaments have taken place here and have turned the LANXESS Arena into the ‘Cathedral of Handball’. We have further cemented our common future: The final tournament of the EHF Champions League will stay in Cologne until 2029. This means that by then we will have hosted the world’s best handball for 20 years. This success story is incomparable to anything else in sport. The extension is a huge sign of trust in us and in Cologne as a location for top-level sports. We would like to thank everyone involved from the bottom of our hearts!”

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