Betfred and Rugby League Commercial (RLC) have extended their contract by three more years for a total of 10 seasons until 2026.
Betfred first teamed up with RLC to become the title sponsor of the men’s Super League in 2017, and since then the bookmaker has stepped up to expand its support for the men’s, women’s and wheelchair Challenge Cup competitions, including shirt sponsorship deals with national teams.
The new partnership extension adds a full-size pitch covering for Wheelchair Rugby League, which can be seen in use for the first time during this Sunday’s Betfred Wheelchair Super League Grand Final in Manchester, as well as the final between England and France in Leeds next month.
Rhodri Jones, the Managing Director of RLC, said: “Rugby League’s partnership with Betfred has been hugely significant for the sport in the seven years since they first became title sponsors of the men’s Super League.
“As we look forward to Old Trafford and the seventh Betfred Super League Grand Final this weekend, we are thrilled that the relationship will continue to develop and thrive for at least another three years.
“As a company founded in Salford and still based in the north where they are significant employers, they have so much in common with Rugby League, which is a key reason why the partnership has proved so fruitful.
“Rugby League could have had no more loyal and valuable partners through the unique challenges presented by Covid-19 since 2020, and it is through those years that Betfred’s relationship with the sport has grown to include Women’s and Wheelchair Rugby League, our three Challenge Cups now with two Finals at Wembley, and our three England teams.
“There has been a feeling through the 2023 season of fully re-emerging from the long shadow of the pandemic with significant increases in attendances and viewing figures – but the increase in revenue from this deal will be vital in allowing us to deliver greater financial sustainability for our clubs, allowing them to maintain and increase the unique role they play in their communities.
“This deal is surely unique in including a bespoke pitch-covering which provides such exciting opportunities for Wheelchair Rugby League to continue its growth since last year’s World Cup triumph. It is another tangible example of Betfred’s support of all levels of Rugby League.”
More importantly, the extended deal between Betfred and RLC will put an even greater emphasis on safer gambling by instigating more collaboration with the Gambling Commission and the government for the creation of a Sports Sponsorship Code.
Betfred owner Fred Done added: “Rugby League has undoubtedly proven to be one of our most enjoyable as well as successful sponsorships and the sport has, at all levels, made myself, my family and the entire Betfred team feel most welcome.
“The sport has been working tirelessly to become one of the most inclusive in the world and it is important that this includes the men’s, women’s and Wheelchair versions of the game so I am delighted to be able to provide the new pitch covering for Wheelchair Rugby League to help with this.
“I look forward to a weekend of fantastic finals and to at least another three years’ Betfred involvement in Rugby League.”