Sponsorship activities of PKO Bank Polski SA

Sponsorship activities realised by PKO Bank Polski SA have aimed at building the image of the Bank as a reliable financial institution, open to the needs and expectations of its clients, engaged in the development of the country and local communities. Every year, the Bank sponsors several hundred events in culture, education and sport areas.

In addition to large, nationwide sponsorship programmes, the Bank participates also in small projects of great importance to local communities.

Sponsorship of culture and arts

Sponsoring culture and arts is one of the most important areas of the Bank’s sponsorship activities. In the support of national culture, what is obliged by almost century-long history, the Bank engages in important cultural events and takes care of numerous cultural institutions.

PKO Bank Polski SA has unwaveringly supported the National Museum in Warsaw for many years. In 2014, the Bank patronised the renewed and modernised Medieval Arts Gallery which exhibits the richest collection from this period in Poland. Moreover, the Bank actively participated in an exceptional cultural event – the Night of Museums in Warsaw, during which the National Museum is traditionally one of the most visited places in the Capital.

The Bank was also a sponsor of the next four portraits of prof. Waldemar Świerzy, ending the series of ‘New retinue of Rulers of Poland’ (‘Nowy Poczet Władców Polski’), which will be given the Polish President during an official ceremony at the Royal Castle in Warsaw in the autumn of 2015. The cooperation with the Warsaw Philharmonic is also long standing, including many memorable concerts for music lovers. In previous year, the Bank acting as Strategic Sponsor of the Warsaw Philharmonic for 2014, was a sponsor of the concert on the occasion of the ceremonial inauguration of the artistic season 2014/2015 as well as a WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln orchestra conducted by Jukka-Pekka Saraste with the participation of a pianist Anna Vinnitska and also the Christmas Carol Concert with the participation of Warsaw Philharmonic Choir conducted by prof. Henryk Wojnarowski.

The Bank’s leading sponsorship initiatives include the patronage of Teatr Polski in Warsaw. For the second time already, the Bank will support the activity of this eminent theatre scene for a period of three successive years.

Other institutions that can count on the Bank’s support include museums, opera theatres and philharmonic orchestras operating in various regions of Poland whose planned exhibitions or programmes attract large audiences and have an impact outside the region’s boundaries. Such cultural institutions include: the Wrocław Opera, the Opera Nova in Bydgoszcz, the Łódź Philharmonic, the Jaracz Theatre in Łódź and the Warmia and Mazury Philharmonic Orchestra in Olsztyn.

In the first half of this year the Bank become also a Strategic Partner of the National Forum of Music (NFM)–new institution within the Polish culture, which arose due to merger of Wrocław Philharmonics and International Festival Wratislavia Cantans. NFM, as a culture institution of city Wrocław, is conducted jointly with the Minister of Culture and National Heritage, the Municipality Wrocław and the Dolnośląskie voivodeship. The NFM plan of action focuses on an organisation of many musical and artistic events, including international festivals such as: Forum Musicum, World Music Days, Wratislavia Cantans or JAZZTOPAD as well as a series of educational projects. Modern and multifunction NFM building will be completed in 2015 and will be the centre of all music projects related to the initiative under the name Wrocław – European Capital of Culture 2016.

PKO Bank Polski SA as a cultural patron was involved in the preservation and popularisation of Polish cinematographic works by becoming involved in the programme for the digital reconstruction of Polish film classics. Thanks to financial support, the younger generation of Poles will be able to watch works by Polish film classics in excellent sound and image quality.

In 2014, the Bank for the third time took patronage of the 39. Film Festival in Gdynia. During the event, guests of the festival participated in the premiere of the digitally reconstructed movie ‘Zmruż oczy’ (‘Squint your eyes’) directed by A. Jakimowicz.

For many years now, the Bank has supported initiatives whose purpose is to protect the national heritage and Polish cultural legacy. As part of this mission, for the fourth time the Bank was the Exclusive Partner of the ‘Lech Wałęsa Award’ (Nagroda Lecha Wałęsy) granted to people ready to make sacrifices for democratic values, and whose attitude creates opportunities for introducing political and social changes. Cooperation with the ‘Lech Wałęsa Institute’ (Instytut Lecha Wałęsy) Foundation which symbolises solidarity with persons or organisations acting for agreement and joint cooperation of the nations, freedom and respect of basic human rights – is of particular importance to the Bank.

As evidence of the care for the Polish cultural achievements, PKO Bank Polski SA has been for several years a strategic partner of the ‘Kisiel Awards’ (Nagrody Kisiela) the granting of which was initiated by Stefan Kisielewski, a writer and columnist. The awards in three categories – a politician, a columnist, an entrepreneur are granted to persons with outstanding achievements in their work.

Science and education

Science and education are the natural directions of the Bank’s sponsorship activities as an employer, an institution open to young people, a learning organisation which develops its employees’ competences. The Bank addresses its activities to both children, pupils and students.

For years now, PKO Bank Polski SA has been a partner of the Knowledge of Poland and Modern World Contest and a sponsor of scholarships for the best participants. Participation in the Contest is an opportunity for high school pupils with extensive knowledge to be admitted to a university and win prizes. On the Banks’ profile on Facebook a special competition, in which students can repeat, strengthen their knowledge and prepare for the Contest, and all fans – win the attractive prizes was launched. Although only students of high schools can participate in the real Contest, the competition on Facebook is open to everyone.

The Bank again supported Poland’s Championship in Team Programming and participation of the University of Warsaw team in Central European University Contest and World University Contest in Team Programming – the prestigious IT contest in the world, which promotes able and ambitious students. The team of IT specialists from the University of Warsaw won the silver medal in the last Contest, which took place in June 2014 in Yekaterinburg.

For years now, the Bank has cooperated with universities in organising conferences and symposia which are important from an academic, economic and social perspective.

Sports sponsorship

In 2014, the Bank continued a running programme called ‘Let’s run together’ (‘Biegajmy razem’) as part of which the Bank provided sponsorship for: more than 60 mass runs throughout Poland, a running training programme BiegamBoLubię carried out in the stadiums of 80 cities and towns, and completed a project called ‘Drużynowa Liga biegowa PKO Banku Polskiego’ with the participation of bank customers and runners.

The most important events realised this half-year are: 14th Cracovia Marathon, 3rd Night Wroclaw Half Marathon, 33rd Wroclaw Marathon, Run Warsaw with PKO Bank Polski SA, 7th Silesia Marathon, 16th Poznań Marathon, Gdynia Grand Prix - Independence Run, Running Triada ‘Zabiegaj o pamięć’ (3 runs cycle: 3rd May Constitution Run, Warsaw Uprising Run and Independence Run), Rzeszow runs, Gryf Half Marathon (Półmaraton Gryfa), Solidarity Half Marathon.

As part of runs supported by the Bank, 59 charity campaigns in total, thanks to which PKO Bank Polski SA’s Foundation donated people in need of support in the fight for health of PLN 840 thousand, were carried out, over 19 thousand runners ran for them.
Apart from the running events which definitely dominated in the sports sponsorship category, the Bank also supported other prestigious sports events, such as the Piast Race (Bieg Piastów), Cavaliada or the Sea Days (Dni Morza).

The annual Piast Race (Bieg Piastów) – the oldest and also the most popular ski race in Poland has took place already for the 38th time in the first March weekend in Szklarska Poręba-Jakuszyce. Continuing the long tradition, PKO Bank Polski SA as a Genaral Sponsor took patronage of this event for the next time. The employees of banking sector, including the representatives of PKO Bank Polski SA started in the race together with other participants.

Cavaliada is a cycle of International Equestrian Jump Competitions, very popular with the public. It is the largest event of this type in Poland. In 2014 the Bank was the sponsor of the whole event consisted of three stages: a competition in Poznań, Lublin and the final of the competition in Warsaw.

PKO Bank Polski SA was also the Main Sponsor of Sea Days (Dni Morza) in Szczecin, a spectacular event addressed to families. The unusual yachts and sailing ships moored to representative seashore in Szczecin. Over 100 thousand persons passed through the area of event.

Undertakings related to the sector

The Bank is involved in leading undertakings related to the sector, thus intensifying its promotional activities supporting sales of the offered products and services. The purpose of the supported initiatives was to present the Bank as the financial market leader.

The examples of such initiatives include i.a.: sponsorship of contests: the Entrepreneur of the Year, organised by EY, the Polish Firm - International Champion, organised by PwC and Young Business Brands, executed by the publisher of the Rzeczpospolita. Other examples of sector initiatives are: Professional Investor, WallStreet conference, Conference Programme of Brokerage Houses Chamber, the Institute of International Finance Annual Meeting of CEE, Bank Chief Executives, Warsaw Capital Market Summit Conference in Warsaw, the 10th Economists Congress, the 4th European Financial Congress, the 5th Retail Banking Congress, the Listed Company of the Year Gala, the 3rd Congress of CFOs of SEG Listed Companies.

As part of this year’s celebration of the 25th Anniversary of the Employers of Poland, the Bank sponsored the events held by this Organisations: the 2nd Polish Economic Congress titled ‘Science for business, business for science’, an International Conference titled ‘From transformation to globalisation’, and it became the patron for the 25th Anniversary Jubilee Gala at the Grand Theatre, during which the 25th Anniversary Super Vectors were awarded in several categories of much importance to the transformation which have taken place in Poland over the last 25 years.

Already for the second time in 2014, the Bank was the sponsor for the competition Grand Press – Journalist of the Year and the Grand Press Gala organised by the Press monthly. As part of this event, the Bank was also Partner for the Grand Press Economy award for a journalist specialising in economics.