The European Handball Federation (EHF) and international sports marketing agency Infront have restructured their 10-year exclusive media and commercial rights agreement after DAZN Group, the global sports media firm and parent company of the sports streaming service, pulled out of the joint venture.
Under a new model, which will run until 2030, Infront will maintain the media rights to EHF national team (EHF Euro events including qualifiers and the EHF Beach Handball Euro) and club competitions.
The agency also retains the marketing rights to the corresponding EHF national team tournaments, with the handball federation’s in-house EHF Marketing arm taking back the rights to club competitions. The production of the EHF Euro events will also be fully handled by Infront Productions.
DAZN Group ends its involvement in the long-term tripartite agreement but maintains the media rights to all EHF club competitions in Austria, Germany, Spain, and Switzerland.
EHF Marketing’s 10-year exclusive partnership with DAZN and Infront began in July 2020. The contract was worth between €500 million ($540.7 million) and €600 million in rights fees and services.
DAZN is looking to cut costs after posting a loss of $2.3 billion in 2021, largely due to a significant increase in rights fees that year, from $1.2 billion to $1.9 billion.
The 2021 results came despite revenues also reportedly growing, by 79% to $1.56 billion. In 2020, DAZN’s total loss was $1.3 billion, while in 2019 the figure was $1.43 billion.
Julien Ternisien, Infront senior vice president of summer sports, said: "EHF and Infront have been partners since 1993 and we have set new benchmarks along every step of our long-term collaboration.
“We entered into a new era of handball through this agreement in 2020, and whilst the structure may have changed, we expect to continue building the sport alongside EHF and EHF Marketing."
David Szlezak, managing director of EHF Marketing, added: "A 10-year-agreement always needs an entrepreneurial vision. The recent restructuring only proves that all parties involved are committed to further growing our sport and deliver its full potential to the fans.
“EHF Marketing retaining the marketing rights of the club competitions enables not only the crucial development of creative new concepts but utmost flexibility and short implementation time. Already at the beginning of the 2022-23 season, we welcomed a new valuable title partner and enlarged the long-term partnership with Gorenje in the EHF Champions League.
“We are looking forward to continuing this journey, expanding the product, and positioning our top-tier club competitions on the European sponsorship market."