Dentsu Incorporation has bagged the Copa America media rights from the financially defaulting original rights holder MP & Silva.
The storm for MP & Silva was yet to subside when Conmebol, the governing body of football in South America, announced that the Dentsu will replace the international sports agency as the exclusive global commercial rights advisor for Copa America 2019.
The news comes as another blow to MP & Silva, which is in believed to be in a ‘state of paralysis’ and on the brink of a major financial collapse after failing to meet payment deadlines to various rights holders.
The company with severe financial woes is losing its credibility as the world’s leading sports media and marketing company.
The Japanese international advertising and public relations company will now take on the sale of all commercial rights for the next year’s quadrennial South American men’s national football tournament, including sponsorship, TV, licensing and hospitality.
MP & Silva’s original deal, which was only signed in March, also included responsibility for production and the logistics of hosting the tournament, the latter of which it would have worked on with the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF), the hosts of the competition from June 14 to July 7 next year.
Conmebol secretary general José Astigarraga, said, “We are pleased to announce Dentsu as our new ally for the consultancy and commercialisation of the assets of the Conmebol Copa América Brasil 2019. Its extensive experience and trajectory in the world of sports business will allow this tournament to be a success and contribute to the development of South American football.”
Soichi Takahashi, executive director of Dentsu Inc., said, “We are very honoured to have the opportunity to represent the commercial rights of the Copa América, one of the most prestigious football events in the world. We look forward to working with Conmebol to elevate this landmark tournament to the next level and help it reach its full potential.”
Dentsu boasts more than 40 years of experience operating within the sports industry and has previously worked on major events such as the Olympic Games and the Fifa Club World Cup, as well as Major League Baseball.
Before Copa America, MP & Silva has also lost contracts with Arsenal, International Handball Federation (IHF), Premier League, European Handball Federation (EHF), Scottish Premier Football League (SPFL), Copa Libertadores, Copa Sudamericana media and Serie A, which has taken the company to court over unpaid rights fees estimated at $44.4 million.
This month, Sports marketing company Infront has acquired the exclusive rights to SPFL vacated following the termination of theMP & Silva contract.
The agency also has pending litigation with FIFA, the global governing body of football, over its advisory contract for rights to the 2018 and 2022 World Cups in Russia and Italy respectively. It is now in a complete disarray facing a bleak and uncertain future.