- French Ligue 1 side Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) has announced Playbetr as their first Latin American betting partner.
- Paris Saint-Germain made headlines this month by signing Lionel Messi following his departure from Barcelona.
- The deal with Playbetr was brokered prior to the acquisition of Messi but his huge popularity in Latin America is a perfect fit for the partnership.
No matter how good you are at what you do it’s never a good idea to downplay the importance of being ‘in the right place at the right time’. That is one of the clear lessons from this story which begins innocuously enough with French Ligue 1 soccer side Paris Saint-Germain signing a deal with Playbetr to be their first Latin American betting partner. Playbetr was no doubt pleased at signing on with the perennial Ligue 1 champions but what was initially a ‘good deal’ for the sportsbook became a ‘great deal’ due to a set of circumstances beyond their control.
The way this type of promotional relationship works is that the two sides agree to terms and then set an announce date at some point in the future. This gives both sides a chance to set things up to gain maximum visibility from the announcement and make sure that details like promotional materials, press conferences, etc. have all been finalized. In this instance, PSG and Playbetr set August 11, 2021 as the date for the announcement of their partnership. A Wednesday in early August is bound to be a quiet news day, right?
Not so much. During the previous week the soccer world was rocked by the news that the world’s consensus best player, Lionel Messi, would be leaving Spanish La Liga side Barcelona where he had spent the entirety of his career. By all accounts Messi wanted to stay with his longtime club but an agreed upon deal could not be consummated under La Liga salary cap rules. The world’s best player was now a free agent and began to consider his next move.
The world soccer media quickly began to speculate that Messi could be bound for one of several clubs–Premier League sides Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur reportedly expressed interest as did one of the protagonists in this story, Paris Saint-Germain. As the media described it, Messi was tight with a number of players on PSG’s roster and they were lobbying behind the scenes for management to bring him in. After weathering a last ditch attempt by Barcelona to salvage the Messi situation that’s exactly what happened. It took several days to finalize the contract but would eventually be finalized on August 10.
The announcement was set for the next day–August 11, which you will recall was also the ‘launch date’ for the PSG/Playbetr partnership. It was likely a short term bad news/long term very good news situation for the sportsbook. On a day where little significant news was expected to drop any and all sports news in Europe was dramatically overshadowed by the Messi signing. On the other hand, they had signed a deal with PSG thinking they were getting the Ligue 1 champions but found themselves instead signing on with the most famous team in the sport at the moment. Instead of a team challenging for the title of ‘best in France’ they wound up with the Champions League favorite and team of the best soccer player in the world.
The terms of the deal are pretty basic as these things go, though any type of ‘visibility’ and ‘brand awareness’ that would accrue to Playbetr is now increased by an order of magnitude with Messi on board:
The gambling firm will also receive further branding exposure courtesy of new digital overlay technology at PSG’s Parc des Princes home, which will target Latin American audiences.
The new system at the stadium, which is the first of its kind in France, geo-localises adverts displayed on the LED screens around the pitch by adapting the messages to the broadcaster’s audience.
Playbetr’s arrangement also covers VIP seats for home matches, club legend meet-and-greet sessions, signed shirts and memorabilia, private events at the Parc des Princes, as well as experiences for Playbetr customers, clients and employees.
Additionally, Playbetr will have access to PSG’s digital platforms, including gameday posts to promote special offers. The betting platform will also provide its customers with enhanced odds for PSG matches and will collaborate on special promotions developed in association with the club.
Marc Armstrong, PSG’s chief partnerships officer, dropped this quote in announcing the partnership:
“We believe that Playbetr will be an ideal partner for the club, and together we will be able to reach and further engage with our fast-growing fan base in Latin America. The unique appeal of Paris Saint-Germain and its players in the region makes the club the perfect platform for Playbetr to develop their brand.”
Marvin Jones, Chief Marketing Officer of Playbetr, must have prepared this quote in advance. Or else he managed to not chortle about his company’s good fortune in their choice of betting partner:
“We are proud to announce our partnership with the most elite and exciting football club in the world. In football, like in betting, performance is primordial. Paris Saint-Germain have built a solid reputation of excellence both on and off the field, and we look forward to extending the brand’s influence even further across the globe.”
The moral of the story? Even in a business negotiation where all variables and scenarios are accounted for the possibility of getting a ‘lucky bounce’ can’t be discounted.