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Zug and Lausanne, Switzerland/London, UK – European Professional Club Rugby (EPCR) has appointed Infront and River Media Partners to distribute the international media rights for the Heineken Champions Cup and EPCR Challenge Cup for the next three seasons.
It is the first time Infront and River Media Partners – the EPCR’s current international media rights representatives – will collaborate to achieve a perfect combination of vision and capabilities from both organisations. Infront will fully leverage its extensive media rights network and act as the driving force behind agreements while benefitting from decades of in-depth rugby expertise from River Media Partners.
François Vergnol, Marketing and Commercial Director for EPCR, said: “We are very pleased to appoint Infront and River Media Partners together to bring our incredible tournaments to an international audience. A key part of our strategy is to deliver our exceptional rugby product to new fans, and Infront and River Media Partners have the exact expertise to help us realise that vision.”
Julien Ternisien, Senior Vice President Summer Sports, Infront, said: “We see huge potential in this new agreement, and it marks a significant step in our summer sports strategy. The Heineken Champions Cup and EPCR Challenge Cup have untapped potential beyond traditional markets, and we are keen to be part of EPCR’s drive to grow the game on a global scale. Thanks to our global network and portfolio we believe Infront is in the best position to deliver that growth in an efficient and sustainable manner.”
Nick Chesworth, Director, River Media Partners, said: “River Media Partners has had a successful partnership with the EPCR over the last few years and the introduction of Infront will substantially build on what has already been achieved. I’m delighted to enter this new phase of European rugby and believe this collaboration is the perfect blend of expertise in both rugby and the media rights landscape as a whole.”
Top14 sides dominated at last weekend’s Finals, with Lyon winning their first-ever European title with a 30-12 victory over Toulon in the EPCR Challenge Cup, while Stade Rochelais won the Heineken Champions Cup beating Irish club Leinster 24-21 following a dramatic try in the final two minutes of the match.
European Professional Club Rugby (EPCR) is the organiser of the Heineken Champions Cup and EPCR Challenge Cup. EPCR’s mission is to create outstanding rugby experiences for all key stakeholders, including leagues, clubs, players, match officials, unions, fans, broadcast and commercial partners, communities and the media.
Established in 2014 with headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland, EPCR has the following members: Fédération Française de Rugby (FFR), Federazione Italiana Rugby (FIR), Irish Rugby Football Union (IRFU), Ligue Nationale de Rugby (LNR), Premier Rugby Ltd (PRL), PRO Rugby Championship DAC (URC), Rugby Football Union (RFU), Scottish Rugby Union (SRU) and Welsh Rugby Union (WRU).
The Heineken Champions Cup and EPCR Challenge Cup tournaments feature clubs which have qualified on merit from their respective domestic leagues – Gallagher Premiership Rugby, the TOP 14 and the United Rugby Championship.
River Media is an independent sports media company working with federations, rights owners, media platforms, broadcasters, investors and brands to create and distribute sports content opportunities on a global basis.
Headquartered in London and led by former IMG Media senior management, Nick Chesworth and Ben Nicholas alongside former FA, WWE and Premiership Rugby executive Dominic Hayes, River Media’s current clients and partners include EPCR, Eterlast & Immutable X, InCrowd Sports, InsideOut Sports, Lawn Tennis Association, Premier Sports, Queensberry, The Rugby Players Association, SportsMedia Ventures, StatsPerform, SweetSpot and World Pro League and UK Pro League Tennis.