Rolling sports business news wrap: Every deal, every day

Top story: Schalke join Piqué's esports eFootball.Pro competition.

Rolling sports business news wrap: Every deal, every day

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Top story

German top flight soccer outfit Schalke 04 have become the second team to confirm their participation in eFootball.Pro, Gerard Piqué's Pro Evolution Soccer esports competition launched in partnership with game developer Konami.

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After announcing a new esports tie-up with Konami earlier this month, the Bundesliga team follow in the footsteps of Piqué's club side Barcelona in joining eFootball.Pro.

The club's director of gaming, Tim Reichert, said: "FC Schalke 04 was one of the pioneer sports clubs worldwide to incorporate their own esports section. The club want to bet on expanding this commitment and also venturing into other sports.

"We look forward to joining the eFootball.Pro and Konami esports competition. Our participation allows us to establish our brand internationally and continue competing at the highest level. We believe that this competition in which there will be teams like FC Barcelona will be a great event for us and our fans."

Piqué added: "We are very happy with this signing for eFootball.Pro. Schalke has a lot of experience in esports and will help us achieve a quality competition.

"Barça will have a very tough opponent in Schalke. The rest of the teams that we will announce and will be added to the competition will also be. We want to create a reference league within electronic sports. And we are sure that we will surprise those who are already fans. As well as those who will be in the future."

Sponsorship

Newly-promoted German top-flight soccer club Fortuna Düsseldorf have signed a two-year deal to upgrade consumer goods company Henkel to become main sponsor.

Barcelona-based Spanish top-flight soccer club RCD Espanyol has signed a partnership deal with Deloitte to work on the La Liga club's digital strategy.

Denver's Metropolitan Football Stadium District has approved a request from the National Football League's (NFL) Denver Broncos to temporarily rename their stadium 'Broncos Stadium at Mile High' as the franchise continue their search for a long-term naming rights partner.

Italian Lega Basket Serie A club Olimpia Milano have upgraded their sponsorship deal with the Armani Exchange division of fashion house Giorgio Armani to become title sponsor for the 2018/19 season.

The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) and European Table Tennis Union (ETTU) have agreed a deal for large equipment manufacturer Liebherr Group to become the title sponsor of the 2018 ITTF-European Championships.

GL Events Field & Lawn has agreed a supply deal to support the 2018 European Championships multi-sport event.

German automobile giant Mercedes-Benz is a new partner of the Chinese esports team Royal Never Give Up (RNG).

Caribbean Airlines is the new official airline for cricket's Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL T20) 2018 series.

Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) have announced that Bubba Burger will be an associate sponsor of Bubba Wallace Jr and the number 43 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 team during this weekend’s events at the Sonoma Raceway.

Media Rights

Make.TV, a provider of cloud-based technology for hyper-local live video, has been selected by the Greenlandic Broadcasting Corporation (KNR) to enable stable coverage during this week's Pan American Handball Championship in Nuuk.

Eleven Sports is set to launch a new sports network, branded MY SPORTS, for dedicated fans in Myanmar. MY SPORTS has secured multi-year, global live rights to the Myanmar National Football League (MNL), ensuring domestic fans have access to all matches from the country’s top tier soccer league.

Global Wanda-owned triathlon promotion Ironman has announced a new partnership with Facebook for live coverage of its 2018 season. 

Maltese telecommunication companies Melita and Go have cast aside their rivalry in the sports rights market to join forces in launching eight new, HD sports channels under the banner of Total Sports Network with a portfolio of top properties.

US-based mixed gender tennis team league World TeamTennis has launched a new Geico-sponsored, over-the-top (OTT) platform providing live streams of every match.

Personal Endorsement

Nature Valley has partnered with UK tennis body, the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA), to encourage people to take up playing tennis ahead of Wimbledon. Britain's top-ranked woman, Johanna Konta, and Leon Smith, GB Davis Cup captain, will front the campaign.

Belgium soccer international Axel Witsel has been appointed as a brand ambassador for SenseBall, a soccer training tool.

SmartSeries

Dentsu Aegis Network (DAN) has announced the acquisition of Klip Desk – a new technology business that captures and measures live content across digital media.

Perform Group has announced that it will build on the existing Perform Sports Cloud infrastructure in partnership with pan-African broadcaster, Kwesé TV, to enhance and increase live content delivery, through the broadcaster, to millions of fans across Africa.

Bidding & Hosting

World Rugby has confirmed Romania and Brazil will host the next two editions of its U20 Trophy national team youth tournament in 2018 and 2019, respectively.

Kenya’s Safari Rally has moved a step closer to returning to the World Rally Championship (WRC) calendar after being confirmed as a candidate event for the motorsport series in 2019.

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) is set to strip Ghana off it's rights to host the 2018 Africa Women's Championship over the recent corruption scandal that gripped the national soccer governing body. 

Politics & Governance

The European Handball Federation (EHF) has said it will impose sanctions on Qatar amid alleged outstanding payments for sponsorship and activation rights.

Most Scottish deal of the day

Scottish Rugby has announced a multi-year, seven-figure contract extension with Tennent’s Lager, ensuring the beer brand will have a presence at every level of the game overseen by the national rugby union association in Scotland.

Our industry digest will update throughout the day as deals break so check back to make sure you do not miss a story