SBD/Issue 9/Leagues & Governing Bodies

Badminton Federation Working with Octagon To Build Brand

Octagon Suggests Badminton
Develop Players Into Stars

The Badminton World Federation is hoping to "undergo a massive make-over" as the sport's governing body "carries out a three-year plan designed to 'grow the badminton brand' worldwide and increase its revenues," according to Javier Espinoza of the WALL STREET JOURNAL. BWF COO Thomas Lund said that the organization “commissioned an audit to sponsorship agency Octagon” to help with the process. Octagon Asia VP Lucy Strong said that the agency has come up with “a series of recommendations,” including “improving the quality of BWF competitions and creating ‘benchmark events’ as opposed to initiating new ones.” Octagon in its report also recommended that badminton authorities “promote a more broadcaster-friendly schedule to capture more viewers and upgrade the quality of their TV production.” In addition, Octagon recommended the BWF “develop its players into global stars.” Badminton has participation levels of around 30% of the population in China and India, “far in excess of levels in Europe.” The sport is “ranked as the second most popular sport" in South Korea and India. It is ranked as the fourth most popular sport in China, eighth in the U.K. and 10th in Canada. The BWF this month hired IMG Media to “handle all media rights for its key events in all territories, across all five continents.” Lund hopes that the deal, which goes into effect in '11, “will help the sport’s brand gain acceptance in previously unexplored markets” (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 9/23).

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