By Jonathan Rest
Top-flight soccer clubs in England and Germany could be set for an additional revenue boost from next season after Supponor, the sports media and technology company, teamed up with ADI Group, the LED screen and signage experts, to enhance perimeter advertising opportunities.
The two firms today announced the launch of digiBoard DBR, a combination of existing technologies, which will go live in the 2016-17 season.
Supponor’s DBRLive technology enables dedicated billboard advertising to be shown to television audiences in different countries, generating extra revenues for the home club.
Although it has been in use in Spain and Italy for the past few seasons, take-up of the technology has been held up in Germany and England as it could only be superimposed on static advertising boards and not on LED boards, which are used widely in the Bundesliga and Premier League.
ADI’s digiBoard systems account for 13 of the 20 LED perimeter systems in the Premier League.
The creation of digiBoard DBR means that clubs can continue to use LED advertising to push their sponsors’ messages in-stadia during games, but also sell targeted advertising in markets around the world.
Alternatively, digiBoard DBR will allow clubs to utilise their LED perimeter boards to deliver messages and promotions, localised advertising and in-game statistics purely to fans inside the venue, without compromising their broadcast advertising value.
The technology has been a year in the making, and Supponor chief executive Roger Hall said: “Our number one priority has always been – and will remain – delivering a virtual product that has all the quality hallmarks demanded in top-tier sports production environments.”
His ADI counterpart Geraint Williams added: “DigiBoard DBR is a product that combines the very best features from Supponor and ADI and is one that we firmly believe will revolutionise the sport perimeter market.”
Before the start of the 2015-16 soccer season, Supponor agreed a new two-year deal with Mediapro, the sports rights agency, to continue providing targeted pitch-side digital advertising from some of the high-profile matches in Spain’s top-tier La Liga.
Supponor, which has been operating in La Liga since the start of the 2012-13 season, offers up to 20 minutes of guaranteed non-domestic TV advertising in live coverage of the away matches of league giants Real Madrid and Barcelona, the most successful and popular clubs in La Liga whose matches are televised live in countries around the world.
Each game has six feeds – domestic, Europe, China, southeast Asia, Middle East and the Americas – enabling viewers in each market to see perimeter board advertising particularly tailored to them, whether it be in the local language or promoting local brands.
Supponor is also well-established in Italy’s Serie A, and told Sportcal in August that it is hoping to finalise deals in Germany in the new campaign, boosted by a successful showing at July’s Telekom Cup, a pre-season exhibition soccer tournament in the country.
The Telekom Cup was the first time virtual pitchside advertising had been used at a sports event in Germany. The four-team tournament at Borussia Park in Mönchengladbach offered virtual advertising on the second row of pitchside boards, with five additional broadcast signals provided in different markets around the world.