Dentsu, the Japan-based advertising giant heavily involved in sport, has recruited UK-based sports marketing agency Entourage Sports & Entertainment to handle commercial rights for its global inventory of events.
The partnership will see Entourage secure long-term commercial opportunities for Dentsu’s events, with the brief also including management of brand activations.
The partnership will start with Entourage starting with the South American national teams' competition the Copa America, before moving on to the rest of Dentsu’s broad portfolio.
Dentsu struck an eight-year deal with South American soccer’s governing body CONMEBOL in 2019 for the rights to three editions of the Copa America in 2020, 2024, and 2028.
Within Japan, it is the official marketing partner of soccer’s top-tier J.League and is responsible for distributing international media rights to that competition (excluding Japan and China) in a three-year deal that came into effect in 2020.
Dentsu also holds Olympic media rights in 22 Asian territories to 2024 and helped the organizers of the 2020 games in Tokyo generate a record domestic sponsorship revenue of more than $3 billion.
Elsewhere, it distributes rights to the IAAF World Athletics Series outside Europe and Africa and handles rights outside Europe to swimming’s FINA World Championships.
Mark Cowen, chief executive of Entourage Sport & Entertainment, said: “We are honored to be working with the Dentsu Inc team across various rights and look forward to building a successful collaboration.
“Properties like Copa America are a natural fit for us, having several years of experience in the local market and with international tournaments.
“Aligning Entourage with Dentsu is a big statement of intent for what we are planning to achieve across the global sporting landscape, and we look forward to working with the team.”
Entourage has previously worked to secure briefs with rights holders in soccer, including world governing body FIFA, European governing body UEFA, Italian giants Inter Milan, and Portuguese powerhouse SL Benfica.
On the brand and sponsorship side, the agency has worked on projects with the likes of Heineken, Emirates Airlines, Konami, FTX, and Visa.