Couchmans LLP advises English and Scottish Football Leagues on key sports data deals

On the eve of the 2013/14 football season, Couchmans LLP, the UK's leading specialist sports law firm has advised Football DataCo Limited, the body that markets and commercialises the official match data of The English Premier League, The Football League and Scottish Professional Football League on two major sports data deals.

Football DataCo has appointed Opta Sports Data as its official data collection and distribution partner to the media sector and RunningBall AG (part of the Perform Group) as its official data collection and distribution partner of live data to the betting sector.

Under their deal, RunningBall AG will deliver live data to their bookmaker clients whilst Opta will apply cutting-edge performance analysis technology to official data to further enhance the Leagues’ market leading broadcast and digital offerings.

The English and Scottish Leagues were amongst the first sports bodies to recognise the value of the data produced by their competitions. The data collection and exploitation model which Football DataCo created in the early 2000’s has been used by other leagues and governing bodies who look to take control of their data in order to realise significant benefits in terms of new revenue streams, fan and sponsor engagement and to combat betting-related corruption.

Steven Burton, Head of Sports Data & Betting at Couchmans LLP, said:

“We were delighted to assist our long-standing client Football DataCo in relation to these deals which will mean data from the UK Leagues will be delivered to betting companies, media and fans faster, more efficiently and in more innovative ways than ever before. We are continuing to see rapid growth in the demand for sports data. The exploitation of official data offers opportunities for leagues and governing bodies but it remains a complex area technically, commercially and politically.”

David Folker, General Manager of Football DataCo said:

“Steven and his team at Couchmans continue to be our go-to advisors in the area of sports data and betting. Their industry knowledge and commercial approach combined with undoubted technical legal expertise has been invaluable in concluding these important and innovative data partnerships.”

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