RFL in hunt to replace Tetley’s

The Rugby Football League (RFL) is searching for a headline sponsor for the Super League following the departure of its long-standing sponsor, bitter brand Tetley’s.

The sponsorship, which was worth about &£8m over five years, will not be renewed for next season. RFL is in talks with companies to replace Carlsberg UK- owned Tetley’s, which has made the sport a cornerstone of its marketing in recent years.

Carlsberg is understood to be scaling back activity around the Tetley’s brand, although the company will maintain links with the sport through its involvement with league clubs.

The RFL has enlisted former Safeway and TXU Energi marketing chief Matthew Crane as a consultant to overhaul the sport’s brand identity and to boost sponsorship potential.

Crane has also been asked to create a marketing strategy for the sport as a whole. He has already led research into the core values of the sport to help to develop a marketing strategy that will encourage greater participation in the sport and boost match attendance. The RFL particularly wants to attract more families to matches.

Crane has also developed a new brand identity for the RFL and has helped to create key performance indicators for both the governing body and the leading Super League clubs.

The brand review encompasses all areas of the sport, from the Great Britain international team to grassroots activity. The strategy will be overseen by Paul Kimberley, who was appointed to the newly created position last month.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email subscriptions@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here