UEFA’s debut betting partner bwin has reportedly declined the opportunity to renew its deal with the football governing body.

According to SportBusiness, bwin has decided not to renew its three-year partnership with UEFA, which expired at the end of the 2023/24 season and covered the UEFA Europa League and UEFA Conference League.

The initial partnership, signed in 2021, was a landmark agreement due to the operator being the first official betting partner of the two aforementioned competitions. The operator enjoyed substantial marketing and branding opportunities throughout the three-year contract, including visibility via stadium advertising across perimeter billboards and broadcast backdrops.

The rights to the two club competitions are sold as a combined package by Team Marketing, the exclusive sponsorship sales agency for UEFA’s men’s club competitions and the agency isn’t wasting any time to find a new deal. 

SportBusiness also reported that the agency has already lined up a lucrative replacement from the betting industry, which is likely to be announced before next year’s competitions.

It is believed that the decision represents a wider contraction of bwin’s sponsorship portfolio as its parent company Entain deals with the fallout from the cost of a bribery investigation, substantial losses and a falling share price.

Entain, which also owns the Ladbrokes and Coral betting brands, has suffered an unfortunate time as of late. In December last year, Chief Executive Jette Nygaard-Andersen stepped down shortly after the company was ordered to pay £615m in compensation for failing to prevent bribery at its former Turkish subsidiary as part of a deferred prosecution agreement with the UK Crown Prosecution Service.

As mentioned above, this development has had negative effects on the company across the board. For instance, Entain’s share price has declined by 49.1% over the past year. The fine has also caused a pre-tax loss of £842.6m in 2023. 

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