Zug, Switzerland / Milan, Italy – Infront Sports & Media and the Italian Lega Calcio (Lega Nazionale Professionisti), have formalised their agreement – first announced in July – confirming Infront as the League’s exclusive strategic advisor in exploiting the national and international media rights for all its properties, including Serie A, Serie B, the TIM Cup (national cup) and the TIM Supercup.
The signing ceremony, which took place in Milan following yesterday’s League assembly, involved Philippe Blatter, President & CEO of Infront Sports & Media and Marco Bogarelli, President of Infront Italy. The Lega Calcio was represented by its President Antonio Matarrese.
The main contract will run from the 2010/11 season, for six seasons, ending on 30 June 2016. Infront will consult Lega Calcio in centralising the global distribution and marketing of audiovisual rights.
The relationship between the two parties has been operational since the appointment took place mid July 2008. The signing of the contract follows six months of intense activity, including the development of a central distribution strategy and a comprehensive tender process for broadcasters and other media companies worldwide.
Infront’s appointment is already adding value
During this time, Infront has also been acting as advisor for the broadcast packages available for the League for the 2008/2009 and 2009/2010 seasons, including highlights and radio rights for Serie A and Serie B, pay-TV rights for Serie B and rights to the TIM Cup (national cup) and the TIM Supercup, covering for the first time all the audiovisual rights on offer. This is a historic first step which promises well, considering that – in the previous two seasons - some rights had remained unsold.
The new centralised distribution process for the period starting from the 2010/2011 season will set new standards in terms of clarity, transparency and market efficiency. The restructured distribution plan will allow the introduction of specifically-designed rights packages for media rights licensees, with the aim to generating the widest possible audience for Lega Calcio programming worldwide.
There will be also greater consistency in the League’s production, format and presentation of the product, based on a policy of management controls and continuous improvement. In addition, considerable effort will be invested into a system of protection, to ensure that rights sold exclusively will be protected from piracy. There are also plans to optimize the process of news access. Among other projects that are under discussion is the creation of a dedicated "Lega Calcio" television channel.
About Infront Sports & Media
Infront Sports & Media, based in Zug, Switzerland, is an experienced international full service sports marketing company with a capacity for innovation that is helping to transform the industry. These innovations have enhanced every area of sports marketing, including distribution of rights, host broadcast, programme production, event operations, brand development, sponsorship and even online entertainment. Infront has 500 employees across 23 offices in 10 countries.
A renowned player in football
Infront Sports & Media has an extensive football portfolio. The Group is a partner of top European football leagues, including Italian's Lega Calcio and the French Football League (Ligue 1) – handling the host broadcast for the first division of the up until 2011/2012 – national football associations including the DFB in Germany and several clubs like SV Werder Bremen, FC Schalke 04, U.S. Città di Palermo and S.S. Lazio Rome. Infront is also best known for working with the sport’s governing bodies. It successfully delivered the global media rights sales and host broadcast of the 2002 and 2006 FIFA World Cup™. Today, Infront is involved in the distribution of the Asian media rights to the 2010 and 2014 FIFA World Cup™ (in a joint venture with Dentsu). The company’s dedicated and highly specialised host broadcast organisation Host Broadcast Services (HBS), is handling the host broadcast of the 2010 and 2014 FIFA World Cup™ and also contributes to UEFA Euro™ events.