Top-level competitions a key driver to deliver the AFC’s ambitions
Kuala Lumpur: The ever-improving stature and reach of the Asian Football Confederation's (AFC) competitions was further underlined at the first meeting of the AFC Marketing Committee for the term 2019-2023 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on Tuesday.
AFC President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa, who opened the meeting chaired by Dasho Ugen Tsechup, said: “The AFC is extremely proud of our new commercial partnership with DDMC Fortis, which was conducted with utmost professionalism.
"Our ambition is to ensure our Member Associations take full advantage of the commercial opportunities in the coming years to bring about positive change.
“We have seen many Member Associations make remarkable strides, but we want to do more, we want to be a leading Confederation and I am confident that this Committee will play a crucial role in carrying out our ambitions.”
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The Committee was given an in-depth report of all 15 of the AFC’s competitions and numerous engagement records set in 2019, with the most significant being the AFC’s flagship men’s competition – the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019 – which saw an astonishing 69% increase in TV Viewership from the last edition in Australia in 2015.
The AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019 engaged with more fans than ever before with the Continental showpiece reaching 732.5 million TV viewers across the globe while more than 890.1 million fans interacted through the tournament’s digital platforms.
The Committee also learnt of the increased investment directed towards delivering the AFC’s ambitions to produce more attractive products for fans and stakeholders as well as to provide its Member Associations with the best opportunities to compete and succeed on the world stage.
In addition to the record USD $14.8 million prize purse distributed to the 24 participating teams during the AFC Asian Cup, Asia’s five representatives at the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 also received a 150% increase in support from the previous edition.
As part of efforts to provide more Member Associations with greater opportunities to experience top level competitions and to strengthen the popularity of the game, there have also been notable increases in the travel contributions in 2019 for all teams across all competitions as well as subsidies for host nations for centralised AFC tournaments.
Members were also presented with a comprehensive overview of the new relationship model and framework with its new commercial partners, DDMC Fortis from 2021-2028, that will help strengthen and maximise the commercial outcomes for the AFC and its Member Associations.
Echoing the AFC President’s message, Marketing Committee Chairperson, Dasho Ugen Tsechup, commented: “It is important for us to understand our current strategies as we determine the best ways to enhance our competitions.
“With the new commercial deal with DDMC Fortis, the AFC is now entering a new era - beginning from the next round of the Asian Qualifiers in 2020 - for our competitions and our Member Associations to reach new heights of excellence.
“It is our responsibility to ensure we are producing the most attractive products and expanding the reach of our game for our Members, passionate fans and stakeholders.”
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