Boriss Shipunov: “We have a long way to go”

Here’s the the second part of Boriss Shipunov’s big interview in the Balabol podcast. You can read previous part here

So does Cosmos have any goals in the Baltic Futsal League? Cosmos will play for what?
The task is to struggle and win in every game, to strive to win this tournament.

And what does winning this tournament do?
At first approximation, it gives the impression that the club or player has developed in a some way. This is an important aspect, the club from Estonia plays with the club from Latvia and wants to show that we can play, too.


I get it, I’m just trying to find some other motivation, maybe money. Obviously, you won’t be able to qualify to the Eurocups, maybe something else?
I was told, as an argument at our spontaneous meeting in winter, that we have a non-professional sport, no money, and what do you want? But I’m probably a black sheep, or I don’t know anything about this life, but a professional starts with a professional attitude about what a person does, and then money starts. It’s like this in every industry. But everyone expects a miracle for some reason: I’m going to lie down, sleep, wake up in the morning, and I’m a professional. Money doesn’t solve anything. If I don’t hit the ball nine times in ten, even if they promise me money…

This is all clear, but the question is: does the club have an additional motivation to win this tournament, other than to prove themselves?
Yes, an additional motivation is that, thanks to the mechanisms provided by the Baltic Futsal League, the club may have an additional audience if these tools are properly handled. Our entire sport life is built around an audience. If I have an audience of a few thousands, then I can monetize it in a certain way. If I don’t have it, it stays at the level of pure enthusiasm until the club head’s mood is over. There were examples in the Estonian futsal: there were two big teams Augur and Anzi. Two owners of it wasted some years to their favorite work but they stopped at one moment and said: enough, we are tired.

Obviously, the audience is the league’s mission, but are there any specific numbers, to what level do you want to grow with this league? In terms of viewing and monetizing.
It’s a topic for a separate issue.

Do you have such task?
There are specific mechanisms, specific figures, and specific goals and objectives to work with, it applies to the attraction of audiences, advertisers and partners. I intentionally say to everyone that we should avoid the word “sponsor”, because unlike in the western society, the word “sponsor” has a very negative meaning in the post-Soviet states. I ask you to be our sponsor, it’s kind of a beggar. I may be good at something, but they’ll give me money just to don’t see me anymore. If I’m talking about a partner or an advertiser, it means I have to make some effort. So I have to justify the money that was spent on me. Not to mention the legal issues, there’s another story.

Let me get this straight. The Baltic Futsal League wants to become self-sufficient, wants to go into advertising space, wants to earn money and through some mechanisms in the future wants to find money for the participating clubs.
Yes, it’s written in the agreements that are signed upon the club’s admission to the league. Some part of the league’s income goes to the club.

Great idea, I think. Good luck.
It’s a very long way. It doesn’t mean I have a suitcase of money around the corner, and I’m going to give it to the clubs now.