Infront Sports & Media

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Infront Sports & Media
Sports & Media
Headquarters Zug, Switzerland
Number of locations
35
Key people
Philippe Blatter (President and CEO)[1][2][3]
Number of employees
900
Parent Dalian Wanda Group+others
Website infrontsports.com

Infront Sports & Media is a sports marketing company based in Zug, Switzerland. The company handles the media and marketing rights for international sports events and federations and also provides sports services - such as advertising, sponsorship and hospitality. It represents all seven Olympic winter sport federations,[4] several summer sport organizations and manages media rights for the FIS World Cup Events. Infront was created in late 2002 through the integration of CWL, Prisma and KirchSportAG. It has 35 offices, which belong to different subsidiaries for geographic regions.

History[edit]

Infront Sports & Media was founded in October 2002 in order to create the television and radio broadcasts for the 2002 FIFA World Cup.[5] The company originated from a merger of two existing Swiss-based marketing companies, CWL and Prisma Sports & Media. Infront's origins are in the football business, but in 2005 the company lost a majority of its FIFA business and subsequently diversified. Today the company is divided into Summer and Winter sports properties (in line with the Olympic differentiation) and also has dedicated Football, Endurance and Digital Production and Sports Solutions units.[6] Until 2011 it was owned by a consortium of shareholders.[citation needed] In September 2011 – European private equity firm Bridgepoint reached an agreement to acquire the company.[7][8][9]

In February 2015, Chinese conglomerate Dalian Wanda won an auction to purchase Infront from Bridgepoint for more than €1 billion.[10][11] In November 2015 it was announced that Infront would be integrated together with the WTC with its Ironman brand under the roof of Wanda Sports.World Triathlon Corporation.[12]

Services[edit]

Infront Sports & Media has 900 employees in 35 offices which are operated by several subsidiaries specializing in a geographic region as well as in specialized services.[13][14][15] Infront Sports & Media supports media rights distribution, marketing concepts and sponsorship sales for sporting events as well as media production[16] (host broadcasting, post production and archive management). An Infront subsidiary, Host Broadcast Services, produces television and radio signals for the FIFA World Cup.[17] HBS provides a stereo, 5.1, and satellite broadcast feed to organizations that own the rights to the media, typically with 40 minutes of pre-game and 20 minutes of post-game content.[5] Another Infront subsidiary, Omnigon [18] helps sports, media and entertainment providers to develop mobile apps and websites.[19]

Infront also provides hospitality and catering,[20] stadium advertising,[21] event management and other related services.[22]

Notable work[edit]

Infront Sports & Media represents all seven Olympic winter sport federations,[23] including the IIHF for ice hockey[24] and the IBU for biathlon. It also manages media and/or marketing rights to most of the FIS World Cup events.[25] In summer sports, Infront started supporting mass participation and endurance sports in 2011, including Ironman events[26] and the UCI World Championships in cycling.[27] It is also a partner for the EHF EURO in handball[28] and the CEV European Championships in Volleyball. In China, Infront represents the Chinese Basketball Association tournament and the national team, Team China Basketball.[29][30] Infront's HBS subsidiary was awarded the Judge's award at the 2010 International Broadcasting Convention for its work helping FIFA broadcast the World Cup in stereoscopic 3D.[31][32]

In football, Infront has supported the FIFA World Cup since 2002. It distributes the Asian media rights and manages the host broadcast production.[15] In 2011, Transparency International asked Fifa to be more open about possible conflicts of interest, when it was discovered that the President of Infront was Philippe Blatter, nephew to the President of Fifa, Sepp Blatter. Fifa said Blatter was not involved in awarding the deal to Infront.[33] Infront also works with the German Football Association (DFB),[34][35] the Italian Lega Serie A[36][37] and the Indonesian, Indonesia Super League.[38] In 2016 Infront with Omnigon collaborated on several projects including digital services to the Serie A and mobile app development for the German Football Association’s DFB Cup.[39][40]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://variety.com/2015/biz/asia/shanghai-groups-join-wanda-in-infront-sports-deal-1201541457/?_sm_au_=iVVMPH2pvWNNDPM3
  2. ^ https://www.theguardian.com/media/2015/feb/11/china-wanda-buys-infront-sports-media
  3. ^ http://variety.com/2016/digital/asia/wanda-owned-infront-ceo-philippe-blatter-china-sports-buying-spree-1201854714/
  4. ^ David Owen. "Infront to acquire Dutch agency specialising in speed skating". www.insidethegames.biz. Retrieved 2015-02-07. 
  5. ^ a b http://www.prosoundnetwork.com/article/fifa-drives-audio-innovation-in-brazil/17786#sthash.iDTn1tX3.dpuf
  6. ^ Adam Nelson. "Infront appoints Claude Ruibal". sportspromedia.com. Retrieved 2017-02-05. 
  7. ^ Helia Ebrahimi. "Bridgepoint Buys Swiss Sports Rights Company". Telegraph.co.uk. Retrieved 2010-09-02. 
  8. ^ "Bridgepoint Reaches Agreement to Acquire Infront Sports & Media AG". Bridgepoint.eu. Retrieved 2011-09-05. 
  9. ^ "Mergers: Commission approves acquisition of sports marketing group Infront by Bridgepoint". Europa.eu. Retrieved 2011-12-20. 
  10. ^ Cotterill, Joseph; Massoudi, Arash; Blitz, Roger. "Dalian Wanda buys Sepp Blatter nephew’s sports rights agency". Financial Times. Retrieved 10 February 2015. 
  11. ^ "Chinas Wanda buys sports group Infront for 1.05 billion euros". businessinsider.com. Retrieved 2015-02-09. 
  12. ^ Liam Morgan. "Infront Sports & Media and World Triathlon Corporation to merge following purchase by Dalian Wanda Group". Inside the games.biz. Retrieved 2015-09-27. 
  13. ^ http://www.fiba.com/news/fiba-joins-forces-with-wanda-to-raise-global-impact-of-basketball "FIBA joins forces with Wanda to raise global impact of basketball" Retrieved February 2, 2017
  14. ^ http://www.infrontsports.com/about-infront/ Retrieved February 2, 2017
  15. ^ a b "FIFA appoints Infront as Exclusive Sales Representative for Asian Broadcast Rights". liveproduction.tv. Retrieved 2010-10-30. 
  16. ^ "WTC to offer Magazine Programming to Ironman Series". isportconnect.com. Retrieved 2012-06-14. 
  17. ^ "With HBS towards the start of the 2010 FIFA World Cup". liveproduction.tv. Retrieved 2010-05-03. 
  18. ^ David Lieberman. "Wanda’s Infront Builds Digital Sports Muscle With Acquisition Of Omnigon". deadline.com. Retrieved 2016-01-20. 
  19. ^ Dan Palmer. "International Ski Federation launch new mobile app". insidethegames.bi. Retrieved 2016-12-21. 
  20. ^ "Kofler and Infront Hospitality in hospitality business alliance". stadia-magazine.com. 
  21. ^ "SV Sandhausen names_Infront_as_exclusive_marketing_partner". stadia-magazine.com. Retrieved 2012-07-19. 
  22. ^ "Four Hills Tournament introduces single brand identity". liveproduction.tv. Retrieved 2010-11-19. 
  23. ^ David Cushnan. "Eurosport Renews Major Winter Sports Package". sportspromedia.com. Retrieved 2012-02-16. 
  24. ^ Adam Fraser. "Infront Signs Skoda to Record Breaking IIHF Deal". sportspromedia.com. Retrieved 2011-05-16. 
  25. ^ David Cushnan. "Infront re-ups with Finnish Ski Association". sportspromedia.com. Retrieved 2013-01-11. 
  26. ^ "World Triathlon Corporation Partner with Infront to Attract Sponsors". isportconnect.com. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  27. ^ James Emmett. "UCI Set for Commercial Growth after Infront landmark deal". sportspromedia.com. Retrieved 2012-09-20. 
  28. ^ Adam Fraser. "Handball is Big Business Across Europe". sportspromedia.com. Retrieved 2009-12-11. 
  29. ^ Matt Cutler. "Infront to Continue Forward Momentum of Chinese Basketball". sportsbusiness.com. Retrieved 2012-09-06. 
  30. ^ Sun Xiaochen. "Sponsors confident in future of basketball league". chinadaily.com.cn. Retrieved 2014-09-16. 
  31. ^ "3D Production: FIFA World Cup™ 2010". liveproduction.tv. Retrieved 2010-05-07. 
  32. ^ "2010 Judges Prize". www.ibc.org. Retrieved 2010.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  33. ^ David Bond. "Fifa criticised after TV rights handed to Sepp Blatter's nephew". bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-10-28. 
  34. ^ Matt Cutler. "DFB Expands Infront Media Rights Partnership". sportsbusiness.com. Retrieved 2011-12-22. 
  35. ^ Paul Nicholson. "Infront secures four more years to their package of German sales rights". insideworldfootball.com. Retrieved 2014-08-18. 
  36. ^ "Football made in Italy". sportelmonaco.com. Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  37. ^ "Italy football clubs pick adviser for TV rights negotiations". uk.reuters.com. Retrieved 2013-11-18. 
  38. ^ "ISL Musim 2015 Tak Bisa Lagi Disaksikan Melalui Antena UHF" (in Indonesian). Retrieved 18 January 2015. 
  39. ^ http://deadline.com/2016/01/wanda-infront-sports-media-build-digital-muscle-buys-omnigon-1201686858/ Wanda’s Infront Builds Digital Sports Muscle With Acquisition Of Omnigon by David Lieberman January 20th, 2016 Retrieved February 9th, 2017
  40. ^ http://www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/Daily/Issues/2016/01/20/Finance/Infront.aspx Infront Sports & Media Acquires Controlling 51% Equity Interest In Omnigon Januarth 20th, 2016 Retrieved February 9th, 2017

External links[edit]