Australian Professional Leagues appoints R/GA as lead agency

The governing body of Australia’s premier football domestic football competitions, Australian Professional Leagues (APL), has named R/GA as its lead agency partner to work across creative and media.

R/GA won the account after a competitive pitch process, with the tender process included agencies in Australia as well as the UK.

The APL was formed in 2021 after Football Australia handed over control of the A-League and W-League to the clubs in December of 2020, with the new body taking over management, marketing and commercialisation of the leagues.

APL director marketing and data, Rob Nolan, said R/GA are the ideal partner to help realise the organisation’s “ambitious” vision for football in Australia.

“We have an ambitious vision, and R/GA are the perfect partner to help us realise it. Football in Australia has unbelievable potential, and we need the right people on the journey to unleash that potential and deliver the future the game deserves.”

R/GA will work with the APL to increase fan engagement and attendance growth via campaigns and other initiatives.

R/GA Australia VP and managing director Michael Titshall said the agency will help re-invent the professional football experience in Australia.

“We are thrilled to be working with APL. They have the most exciting sports product in the country with unlimited potential. We can’t wait to help them realise that potential by re-inventing the professional football brand and experience in Australia.”

R/GA APAC ECD, branding and consulting, Ben Miles, added: “From the outset it was clear that APL had big ambitions for the future. We couldn’t be more excited to partner with them as they look to innovate by bringing together brand, experience, technology and marketing. We’re ready to push go and reimagine football in Australia.”

Since its launch, the APL has hired a series of experienced executives, including Ant Hearne and Michael Tange. The body continued to build out its commercial and marketing function in March with the hires of Ryan Sandilands, Rob Nolan and Stacey Knox.

The A-League and W-League will be shown on Network Ten and streaming platform Paramount+ after ViacomCBS bought the rights in a deal estimated to be worth in the vicinity of $200 million including cash and commercial contra.


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