Closing 2019 trading, IMG Arena confirms that it has secured a long-term partnership to distribute Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) content to the global betting market.
Agreeing terms on a five-year arrangement, IMG Arena will act as lead distributor of SPFL ‘live stream broadcasts’, and will maintain production set-ups for certain SPFL matches.
The distribution will encompass Ladbrokes Premiership matches including the legacy ‘Old Firm’ derby between Celtic and Rangers, which attracts global TV audiences in the millions. Furthermore, the SPFL Championship, League One and League Two divisions as well as the Betfred Cup and Tunnock’s Caramel Wafer Cup will be maintained by IMG Arena for global betting incumbents.
Neil Doncaster, SPFL Chief Executive, said: “Deepening our mutually successful partnership with IMG ARENA creates a range of increased commercial benefits, allowing us to reinvest significant revenues across the SPFL. It will also help to increase the international visibility and popularity of our competitions through innovative, best-in-class production.”
Optimising SPFL broadcasts, IMG Arena will utilise the AI-automated sports production technologies of Pixellot studios, which provide a ‘network of cameras tracking play’ to generate match footage that can be exported across all platforms including mobile devices.
The footage generated by Pixellot provisions will be made available to an international audience, restricted to countries outside the UK and Ireland.
The SPFL partnership marks a successful year-1 in operations for IMG Arena, the ‘betting innovation’ division of global sports marketing and rights distribution IMG.
Freddie Longe, Managing Director at IMG Arena, added: “We are proud to renew our longstanding partnership with the SPFL. The extension of our relationship will see our remit grow further over a lengthy period and secures a key product in our portfolio. Signing this deal is a strong endorsement of our streaming product.
“The Ladbrokes Premiership is an exciting competition that attracts sports fans from across the world. Our full SPFL offering means that we will be able to present an unprecedented level of Scottish football action to our international audience.
“Adding our innovative AI-automated solutions to IMG ARENA’s world-leading production expertise creates a new template for sport streaming. This new venture will lead to audience growth for the SPFL’s competitions and will help take its content offering to the next level.”