IMG Media has secured an eight-year contract to become the exclusive worldwide audiovisual rights consultant and distributor for the Giro d’Italia with the aim of boosting the cycling event’s global presence.
IMG has been awarded the deal by event organiser RCS Sport, the sports event arm of the Milan-based RCS Media Group. The agreement runs until 2020 and also includes RCS Sport’s other cycling events such as the Milano-Sanremo, the Lombardia classic, the seven-day Tirreno-Adriatico stage race, the Strade Bianche event and the Gran Piemonte race.
Giacomo Catano, CEO of RCS Sport, said: “We are sure that IMG Media’s expertise will help us to improve the value and increase the international visibility of the Giro d’Italia and the other RCS Sport races and allow millions of cycling fans to enjoy the beauty and drama of Italian cycling. RCS Sport has a strong international approach and we see IMG Media as the right partner to further develop our global strategy.”
The Giro is one of cycling’s three Grand Tours alongside the Tour de France and Vuelta a España. The 2012 edition started from Herning, Denmark and ended in Milan, with Canada’s Ryder Hesjedal of the Garmin-Barracuda team the final overall winner. RCS said the event was broadcast in 165 countries across all five continents, reaching 125 million households and a global cumulated audience of 775 million people.
Commenting on Thursday’s announcement, Ioris Francini, IMG Media’s executive vice-president and head of acquisitions and sales worldwide, said: “The Giro d’Italia is widely recognised as the toughest of the Grand Tours. The landscapes are breathtaking and feature some of the most iconic places on the planet. As road cycling gains in popularity and attractiveness for promoters, sponsors, broadcasters and fans globally, IMG Media’s mission is to further expand the success of the Giro d’Italia, the other Italian classic races, across all five continents. The sponsor and media appetite for road cycling is as strong as it has ever been.”
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Giro d’Italia seeks global exposure boost through IMG Media partnership