The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has extended its title sponsorship of the Six Nations Championship rugby union tournament for another four years.
The state-backed, UK-based bank, which first became associated with the European competition in 2003, has renewed terms with the Six Nations Council until 2017. RBS will also extend its support of Six Nations Rugby's RugbyForce community programme for local clubs. Financial terms were not released but when reports first circulated last July that the partnership was set to be renewed, several British media outlets valued the deal at UK£44 million (US$69.9 million) over four years.
The current deal, which had been set to expire this year, was reportedly worth an annual US$7 million.
Six Nations Rugby chief executive John Feehan said: "We are delighted to extend our successful partnership with RBS. In the 11 years that the bank has backed the Championship we have worked together to exponentially grow the tournament both at a global level in terms of fans enjoying the games, but also at a community level, through the RBS RugbyForce programme."
Gregory Thorpe, the head of brand and marketing at RBS, added: "Our RBS 6 Nations sponsorship delivers significant value to our business and is the cornerstone of everything we do in rugby. The Championship is a source of pride and passion for many of our customers, from the living room to the board room. Our involvement helps us engage more effectively with those customers and to connect with the communities in which we operate. We're thrilled to be on board for another four years."
The 2013 RBS 6 Nations Championship begins on Saturday 2nd February.
An interview with Six Nations Rugby chief executive John Feehan will appear in the March 2013 edition of SportsPro. Click here to subscribe.