German Sports Aid Foundation

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German Sports Aid Foundation
Logo of the German Sports Aid Foundation
Founded May 26, 1967
Place of foundation Berlin
Chairman Thomas Berlemann
Association headquarters Frankfurt am Main

The Deutsche Sporthilfe Foundation is a non-profit foundation under civil law. The purpose of the foundation is the non-material and material support of athletes to compensate for their demands by society at international championships and national representation. The athletes should be financially supported in return for their services to the reputation of their country. The Chairman of the Board of Trustees is Norbert Winkeljohann . The patron is the Federal President.


Historical logo
Historical logo
Historical logo

The foundation was established on May 26, 1967 in Berlin on Willi Daumes initiative . The first chairman was Josef Neckermann (until 1988), followed by Willi Daume and Erich Schumann. From 2005 to 2007 Hans Wilhelm Gäb held this office, he succeeded Hans-Ludwig Grüschow, who resigned on July 29, 2005 . On January 1, 2008, Olympic dressage champion Ann Kathrin Linsenhoff was appointed as the new chairwoman of the foundation. On September 22, 2008, Ann Kathrin Linsenhoff resigned from her position after differences with the Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Hans Wilhelm Gäb. After Michael Ilgner, member of the board of directors and chairman of the management board, took over operational management, Werner E. Klatten was appointed as the new chairman of the board from December 1, 2008 on October 23, 2008 , while Franziska van Almsick became his deputy for sports .

With the entry into force of new articles of association on April 1, 2010, a new management structure was established based on the usual corporate governance regulations, which includes the merger of management and the board of directors, the strengthening of the control functions of the supervisory board and the separation of supervision and operational management. Michael Ilgner was appointed full-time chairman of the board, Werner E. Klatten and Franziska van Almsick moved to the newly appointed supervisory board and, together with the former sailing world champion Michael Beckereit, form this body that appoints board members and supervises the activities of the board. In addition, the Supervisory Board appoints leading representatives from business and society to the Board of Trustees and appoints one of the appointed members as chairman of the Board of Trustees. Former national water polo player Thomas Berlemann has been chairman of the board of Deutsche Sporthilfe since April 1, 2020.


Sporthilfe stands for performance, but against performance manipulation, it stands for fair play, and it sees its task as fighting for the integrity of sport and emphasizing its importance for peaceful and social coexistence in our society. She sees the promotion of sporting elites and role models as an important step in conveying the message of sport to society.

The foundation promotes materially, ideally and socially athletes who are preparing for top sporting achievements, or who have achieved them and who, through their demeanor and willingness to perform, stand nationally and internationally as models for the Federal Republic of Germany and its society as well as motivators for popular sports Move.


The development in top-class sport around the world and securing the future of top performers in top-class German sport are reflected in the foundation's funding structures. In its more than 50 years of activity for top-class sport, the foundation has developed support concepts for athletes. This support gives athletes the opportunity to successfully compete in modern competitive sports and, at the same time, to advance their professional careers (school, training, studies, work) and to prepare them for the time after active competitive sports.

In close cooperation with the national professional associations, the foundation continuously supports 4,000 athletes who are preparing for top sporting performance, who are doing it or who have already achieved it. The performance of the athletes in international competitions is the decisive criterion, in the junior area the performance perspective is particularly taken into account.

Sponsored athletes

All national team athletes in Olympic sports and selected athletes in non-Olympic sports are funded. Paralympic athletes receive basic funding similar to the "Top Team" and "Top Team Future" in the Olympic area, as well as selected additional funding programs, depending on their performance and professional status. All athletes from the Deaflympics squad receive basic monthly funding as well as targeted additional funding programs from the deaf sport.

Funding concept

The current funding concept was developed together with the leading associations and athlete representatives. It is geared towards athletic performance and an international perspective, is oriented towards individual needs and is intended to support athletes up to a career start with appropriate potential. In recent years, funding has increasingly focused on the compatibility of top-class sport and training. This is the decisive task and shows responsibility for value-oriented sports promotion that accompanies athletes over many years and beyond their active career and does not consider them according to the standards of the media and marketers.

Basic funding Every national team athlete receives basic funding. This includes:

  • an insurance package from Allianz Insurance, which includes accident, liability, legal protection and international health insurance
  • a wide range of free products and services
  • Free seminars on career orientation, application training, dealing with the media, etc.
  • access to the Sporthilfe career portal “springboard future” with numerous companies that offer short-term internships and a password application for starting a career.

Financial support can also be provided as part of the basic funding: Each umbrella association receives an individual annual budget from Deutsche Sporthilfe, which it can distribute to selected athletes as one-off or permanent financial support based on performance and effort (e.g. for sporting performance goals, sports or training-related expenses). The money will be paid directly to the respective athletes after approval by the expert committee.

Selected talents can also be included in the youth elite promotion, financed by the DFL Foundation (200 euros / month).

Top-Team Future (in addition to basic funding) In the Top-Team Future, in which funding from the Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Home Affairs (BMI) takes effect, athletes with the greatest prospects for a place in the top 8 at world championships or the Olympic Games or Paralympics within the next one to eight years. The monthly funding in the Top-Team Future is 700 euros or 300 euros for owners of a sports funding agency.

Join in

  • for students the Deutsche Bank Sports Scholarship (300 euros / month)
  • for trainees up to 300 euros / month
  • for pupils, possibly boarding school subsidy (100 euros / month)
  • Refunds for tuition (up to 2,000 euros / year)
  • for employees lost earnings for association measures

In addition, athletes from the Top Future team who want to make their first contacts in the world of work can get an individual mentor.

Top team (in addition to basic funding) In the top team, athletes who placed in the top 8 at World Championships or Olympic Games or Paralympics or who performed a comparable performance (usually athletes in the DOSB's Olympic squad) are funded . The monthly funding in the top team is 800 euros or 400 euros for owners of sports funding agencies.

Join in:

  • for students the Deutsche Bank Sports Scholarship (300 euros / month)
  • for trainees up to 300 euros / month
  • for pupils, possibly boarding school subsidy (100 euros / month)
  • Refunds for tuition (up to 2,000 euros / year)
  • for employees lost earnings for association measures

In addition, athletes from the top team who want to make their first contacts in the world of work can get an individual mentor. Athletes with World Championship medals in individual Olympic disciplines also receive the Mercedes-Benz Elite grant (an additional 400 euros / month).

Athletes without a sports funding agency (Bundeswehr or similar) can be supported in their direct preparation for the Olympic Games for up to 18 months with the ElitePlus funding, financed by PwC (an additional 1,000 euros / month). The expert committee of Deutsche Sporthilfe decides on the admission in individual cases.

Post-active support Athletes who have been promoted once in the top team receive support beyond the end of their sports career. Financially:

  • Continued payment of the Deutsche Bank Sports Scholarship (€ 300 / month, max. 150% standard period of study or 3 years)

Further support for starting a career in line with potential:

  • Mentors continue to accompany you until you start your job
  • Access to the Sporthilfe career portal "Springboard Future"
  • Opportunity to finance a degree for a part-time Master of Business Administration (MBA) at the WHU-Otto Beisheim School of Management in Düsseldorf


The foundation uses several major events , Deutsche Sporthilfe organizes numerous events to draw attention to its goals, to generate income from donations and to create platforms on which athletes, supporters, entrepreneurs and partners can exchange and get to know each other.

Sports ball

Around 2,000 invited guests from sports, business, politics, culture and the media meet annually at this event. The pure benefit proceeds are around three quarters of a million euros.

Award of the Golden Sports Pyramid

The Golden Sports Pyramid has been honoring an outstanding athlete for her life's work since 2000. In addition to sporting success, the criteria for nomination are exemplary performance in social and professional areas. The award winner will pass on the prize of 25,000 euros associated with the honor to a benefit project in sport. In 2019, the golden sports pyramid went to swimming legend Franziska van Almsick , in 2018 a former swimmer, Klaus Steinbach, was honored. a. Golf legend Bernhard Langer national coach Joachim Löw (2015) and sailor Jochen Schümann (2014).

Junior athlete of the year award

The junior athlete of the year award is a newcomer party in German sport. As part of the event (formerly: "Festival of Encounter"), the best young athletes of a year are honored with the award, which was first presented in 1978. The most famous award winners include Franziska van Almsick , Timo Boll , Laura Dahlmeier , Anni Friesinger , Michael Groß , Magdalena Neuner , Maria Riesch and Katja Seizinger . Another highlight of the event since 2013 has been the farewell to successful athletes who ended their sporting careers in the past year. The subsequent party is all about the casual exchange between successful young athletes, active and former top athletes as well as friends and supporters of Sporthilfe.

The Sporthilfe Golf Masters

The Sporthilfe Golf Masters is one of the pioneers among charity golf tournaments. Since 1989, Sporthilfe has combined the passion for golf of business people and athletes with the idea of ​​acquiring funds for the promotion of young sport in Germany. In some cases, active and former Olympic and world champions take part, for example Rosi Mittermaier-Neureuther , Ricco Groß , Jochen Behle , Heiner Brand , Fritz Fischer , Sven Ottke and Dieter Thoma . This includes the golf athlon , a combination of golf and biathlon.


Since 1967, the foundation has spent over 477 million euros on promoting young talent and top athletes. In 2018, the funding total was around 18 million euros. Sporthilfe has to generate the majority of its financial resources annually through entrepreneurial action in fundraising. Since 2018, Sporthilfe has also received direct state support to promote athletes.

The 2017 financial year (still without government support) is presented below.

31 percent of the annual income comes from donations from curators and sponsors of Sporthilfe. 38 percent come from the increasingly important revenue from event, sponsorship and benefit programs. This includes support for the German Olympic Sports Confederation through subsidies from Olympic marketing. The proceeds from the "GlücksSpirale" lottery bring about 19 percent. 12 percent come from other income.

The foundation endeavors to give the largest part of its annual income to the athletes. According to the German Commercial Code (HGB), Sporthilfe generated a total of EUR 24.0 million in total income in the four tax law areas of ideal operation, asset management, special purpose operation and economic business operations in the 2017 financial year. The net income for the year of EUR 159 thousand resulting from expenses of EUR 23.8 million was added to the free reserves, which amounted to EUR 6.8 million as of December 31, 2017. The foundation paid taxes amounting to 411 thousand euros. The foundation used 7 percent of its income to process its internal funding administration (1.4 million euros). This includes both personnel expenses and material expenses (buildings, travel expenses, etc.). The foundation spent a total of 6.2 million euros in 2017 on the acquisition, support and implementation of fundraising campaigns, events, partnerships and collaborations to generate total income. A significant portion of this is spent on the implementation of the “Ball des Sports” benefit event, which last year generated benefit income of EUR 0.73 million.


year Surname
1967-1988 Josef Neckermann
1989-1991 Willi Daume
1991-1996 Erich Schumann
1997-2005 Hans-Ludwig Grüschow
2005-2007 Hans Wilhelm Gäb
2007-2008 Ann Kathrin Linsenhoff
2008-2010 Werner E. Klatten
2010-2020 Michael Ilgner
since 2020 Thomas Berlemann

See also


  • GF / ms .: DSH - How is funded. In: DTS . 1998/2, p. 43.
  • Thomas Weiß: A stroke of luck with an eventful history. In: table tennis . 2007/5, pp. 16-17.

Web links

Individual evidence