Fed Done, Betfred, with Super League trophy

Betfred extends ‘bangers and mash’ Super League deal

Betfred has extended its flagship sponsorship arrangement with the Super League, the top-tier of English and European rugby league, for a further three years.

The bookmaker first partnered with the Super League in 2017, and in the years since, the company has extended its association with the sport to cover men’s and women’s wheelchair rugby, the England national team and the Challenge Cup.

The renewal will see a 25% increase in Betfred’s contribution to rugby league, helping fund a new full-size pitch for the wheelchair code, scheduled for use this weekend in the Wheelchair Super League Grand Final in Manchester and for the World Cup final between England and France in Leeds next month. 

Fred Done, Founder of Betfred, stated: “Rugby League has undoubtedly proven to be one of our most enjoyable as well as successful sponsorships and the sport has, at all levels, made myself, my family and the entire Betfred team feel most welcome.

“The sport has been working tirelessly to become one of the most inclusive in the world and it is important that this includes the Men’s, Women’s and Wheelchair versions of the game, so I am delighted to be able to provide the new pitch covering for Wheelchair Rugby League to help with this.

“I look forward to a weekend of fantastic finals and to at least another three years’ Betfred involvement in Rugby League.”

The Super League partnership has been one of Betfred’s most significant sports sponsorship activities throughout its history, although the firm has diversified its marketing in other sports such as boxing, snooker and horse racing.

With rugby league being traditionally popular across Northern England and Betfred having been founded in Salford, Greater Manchester, the brand has identified strong synergies with the sport. The company asserted that “Betfred and Rugby League go together like fish and chips or bangers and mash!”

Rhodri Jones, Managing Director of RL Commercial, noted: “Rugby league’s partnership with Betfred has been hugely significant for the sport in the seven years since they first became title sponsors of the men’s Super League.

“As we look forward to Old Trafford and the seventh Betfred Super League Grand Final this weekend, we are thrilled that the relationship will continue to develop and thrive for at least another three years.

“As a company founded in Salford and still based in the north where they are significant employers, they have so much in common with Rugby League, which is a key reason why the partnership has proved so fruitful.”

As the partnership has developed, there has been a heavier emphasis on responsibility regarding betting marketing, particularly against the backdrop of the Gambling Act review, which has introduced a new Code of Conduct for sponsorships.

As mentioned above, the latest incarnation of Betfred’s Super League partnership will include safer gambling features, taking into account ‘the principles of the draft Code to ensure all parties meet their obligations’.

The company will work with RL Commercial and the Rugby Football League (RFL) to promote safer gambling, building on the latter’s work with the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) and the government over the adoption of the Sports Sponsorship Code.

Jones concluded: “Rugby League could have had no more loyal and valuable partners through the unique challenges presented by COVID-19 since 2020, and it is through those years that Betfred’s relationship with the sport has grown to include Women’s and Wheelchair Rugby League, our three Challenge Cups now with two Finals at Wembley, and our three England teams.

“There has been a feeling through the 2023 season of fully re-emerging from the long shadow of the pandemic with significant increases in attendances and viewing figures – but the increase in revenue from this deal will be vital in allowing us to deliver greater financial sustainability for our clubs, allowing them to maintain and increase the unique role they play in their communities.

“This deal is surely unique in including a bespoke pitch-covering which provides such exciting opportunities for Wheelchair Rugby League to continue its growth since last year’s World Cup triumph. It is another tangible example of Betfred’s support of all levels of Rugby League.”

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