Racing UK and ATR to join forces

Sun 10th Jan 2010, 10:41
Cork racecourse may soon be seen worldwide
Cork racecourse may soon be seen worldwide
(Healy Racing Photos)
Racecourse Media Group (RMG), the umbrella organisation for the 30 British racecourses which own and operate Racing UK, has joined forces with At The Races to create a new company which will exploit international distribution rights for all British and Irish racecourses.

They have pooled their respective rights into the venture which will create a new, unified broadcast service aimed at retail-based wagering operators around the world. The joint venture is intended to grow revenues and reduce duplicated costs which will further increase the returns to racing that have grown since the introduction of 48-hour declarations on UK Flat racing. The company will start trading on March 1st 2010.

The new company will be run by joint Managing Directors Matthew Imi and Richard FitzGerald, the Chief Executives respectively of ATR and RMG, together with two additional Directors representing both ATR’s and RMG’s racecourse partners and an Independent Chairman.

The new operation will be tasked with maximising the revenue opportunities for British and Irish racing in important pari-mutuel markets such as Italy, France, South Africa, Turkey and Australia as well as further developing opportunities in newer markets such as Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong. Discussions relating to the possible expansion of the joint venture’s remit to cover other international distribution and syndication opportunities are ongoing.

The joint venture has commissioned SIS to create an international broadcast service which will provide coverage of live racing from all 60 British and 26 Irish tracks and to manage distribution of the service to fixed odds markets such as the Caribbean and Sri Lanka.The service will be launched under a new brand to be agreed by both partners.

Matthew Imi, Chief Executive, At The Races said: “This joint venture partnership is great news for all British and Irish racecourses and will signal a real step change in the way At The Races and RMG can exploit the opportunities for international distribution. As a combined and unified product British and Irish racing is a hugely powerful proposition to racing fans and betting audiences around the world, arguably one that is unrivalled in terms of quality, depth and variety by any other racing jurisdiction. Richard and I are looking forward to working together to ensure we fully maximise the opportunity and more effectively market and promote our racing as part of a unified service.”

Richard FitzGerald, Chief Executive, RMG, said: “We are very pleased that the British and Irish racecourses are able to be sold as one package which will drive further value for our racecourses and provide a better product to our customers across the world. I would like to put on record our appreciation to Phumelela Gold Enterprises for the work they have done for our racecourses in this area over the last five years in developing the marketplace and as one of our largest international customers for British racing. It is significant progress that RMG and ATR are able to work together to develop a combined product and we are all looking forward to working together to create the leading international package.”

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