Welsh regions sign joint sponsorship deal with BT Sport

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BT Sport has extended its investment into rugby by securing a new sponsorship deal with the four Welsh regions. The new multi-million pound agreement over three years is the largest joint sponsorship in the history of the four regions.

Three of the regions will play with the BT Sport logo on their shirts next season. Scarlets and Dragons will have the logo on the front of both home and away shirts, while it will feature on the front of the home and the back of the away Ospreys shirt.

Cardiff have, for the first time, sold the naming rights to their stadium – it will be referred to as the BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park, which will no doubt thrill bosses at Sky, who have the rights to all PRO12 games next year and will have to broadcast from the stadium.

This comes hot on the heels of reports that they are apparently considering paying £20m to obtain the naming rights of Murrayfield, too.

BT Sport already sponsor both Scottish sides, Edinburgh and Glasgow Warriors, meaning they now have a presence at five of the 12 sides in the league next season.

Mark Davies, acting CEO of Regional Rugby Wales, the body which represents the four Welsh regions, said: “It’s a time to celebrate the strides that the Welsh regions are making to take the game forward in Wales with real unity, a common purpose, shared philosophy and commitment to ensuring that our businesses are sustainable.

“This is a clear vote of confidence in the Welsh Regions and we are delighted to be working alongside BT, a successful global brand that can see the real value in investing significantly in our regional businesses, our 200 professional players and the rugby development structures we have in place.

“It’s great to have positive news for regional rugby as we all now look forward to a new season, with a new European competition and greater challenges in our PRO12 domestic league.”

Photo by: Patrick Khachfe / Onside Images

5 thoughts on “Welsh regions sign joint sponsorship deal with BT Sport

  1. Sounds like a good deal for both parties on the face of it. The WRU will no doubt be thoroughly hissed off, no way do they want the regions getting access to too much external finance or next thing you know the regions will be demanding the right to an opinion! Maybe the WRU could also sponsor the regions with their logo appropriatley on the backside of the shorts.

    Alternatively perhaps the regions could approach the RFU with a deal to develop and make available English qualified players as per the PRL/RFU deal. Assuming that WRU survive the resulting heart attacks be difficult for them to then refuse the Regions a similar deal for Welsh qualified players.

    Iknow, I know it’ll never happen but it’s fun for those of us not emotionaly involved in Welsh rugby to speculate – how deep will the WRU dig that hole before they eventually stop digging.

    1. “Maybe the WRU could also sponsor the regions with their logo appropriatley on the backside of the shorts.” well it made me laugh anyway .

  2. “it’s fun for those of us not emotionaly involved in Welsh rugby to speculate”

    Your sympathy and tact at this difficult and emotional time for those of us affected by these awful circumstances is greatly appreciated! :-)

    This does sound like a great deal – even with no detail on the £s involved it’s got to be better than the previous deals any of these regions had. I always think there is a little extra credence given to a team/league through a sponsor like this as well – seeing “Joe’s Pie Shop” on a shirt smacks of an amateur level team, “BT Sport” looks/sounds like a pro entity.

    Sadly, you’re right on the nail with where we go next – emboldened RRW clashes heads with pig-thick WRU amateurs again, and again, and again….

    In brighter news at least The Blues have made a statement with their new Kiwi coach and some good signings for next season. Have to look on the bright side.

  3. Pleased for the region’s. Strong Welsh rugby is an essential part of nh rugby in my opinion. For the same reason, delighted that Glasgow are having a great season. Long live diversity!

    Have to say though that the pantomime that is Welsh rugby governance reminds me that it’s not just the English that can make a complete balls up of running a successful sport!

    On another thought maybe this means that the Welsh regions will be able to afford George North again to stop him being ruined by playing English club rugby (a s one commentator may have said on this blog!). Personally doesn’t look like it’s going too badly for him at the moment! He could be playing for glos though. That would have ruined his confidence!

  4. I doubt any of the Regions will be in a position to buy back George anytime soon. Sadly Wales’ capital city commands smaller crowds for professional rugby than their much smaller English neighbours – Gloucester, Bath and Exeter. Until the Regions can change that they are condemned to relative poverty.

    I wish you luck with your Kiwi coach Brighty but what you really need is someone with a track record of herding cats. Maybe you could do a deal with the RFU and get some of Richie’s time on a consultancy basis. Of course you might have to offer Katherine Jenkins in part exchange she’d certainly help our chariot fly!

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