Premier League trawls for head of marketing

The FA Premier League is hunting for a new marketing chief to replace commercial director Stephen Pearson, nearly a year after he resigned in controversial circumstances.

Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore, who joined last November after holding the same post at the Football League, plans to rebuild the commercial operation.

The role has been handled by licensing manager Miles Pearce since Pearson and his deputy, Malcolm Crease, left last March.

The body negotiates a number of commercial programmes on behalf of the 20 Premier clubs, but nearly all proceeds from these deals are split between the 20 clubs.

It handles the valuable broadcast rights, held by BSkyB, but Sky’s contract runs out at the end of next season, and the company is likely to face intense competition to retain the rights as other media giants, including NTL, push the price over &£1bn.

The Premier League also negotiates the Premiership title rights, held by Bass Brewers’ Carling brand, and has nine official sponsorships, held by brands which include McDonald’s, Visa, Sky Sports and The Daily Telegraph.

Pearson and Crease resigned last year to set up their own consultancy. They were subsequently embroiled in a series of revelations in the national press, which they have always strenuously denied.

Pearson is now commercial director of Arena 2000, while Crease is vice-president of sales and marketing for ISL Tennis.

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