The Infront sports marketing agency has become the exclusive media rights partner of the Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) just weeks after Scotland’s organising body for domestic club soccer severed its ties with MP & Silva.
The SPFL terminated its agreement with the stricken global sports agency earlier this month amid reports that the company is “in a state of paralysis”. The split came midway through a nine-year contract that was originally signed in 2013 as MP & Silva failed to make a series of payments to the league.
The SPFL’s new partnership with Infront covers the international media rights for Scotland’s top four domestic soccer leagues, as well as the Irn Bru Cup and Betfred Cup knockout competitions.
Infront said that the tie-up reflects the company’s ambitions to expand into the UK market following its recent launch of a new office in London.
“The SPFL has its own unique legacy,” said Stephan Herth, Infront’s senior vice president of football. “As the second-oldest league in the world, it has welcomed many top players and managers over the past few decades. That history will almost certainly be added to for the next seasons. Infront looks forward to building on that legacy and taking the league to a new level on the international stage during that time.”
“Infront are a highly respected and experienced global rights agency,” added SPFL chief executive Neil Doncaster. “They emerged from a number of different companies each of which were keen to represent us overseas. We will be working with Infront over the coming weeks to agree deals in those territories where SPFL football is not currently shown.”
The announcement precedes this weekend’s Old Firm derby between Celtic and Rangers, with the latter looking to record their first league win over their cross-city rivals since 2012.
The deal comes as a significant boost for the SPFL, which had feared a global TV blackout as international broadcast giants were reluctant to pay for rights to Scottish soccer competitions with MP & Silva seemingly on the brink of financial collapse.