Spain’s LaLiga today teamed up with Dubai-based media company Galaxy Racer to extend its reach. The intended target is the Middle East and northern Africa (MENA) region as well as India. The 15-year agreement worth $2.9 billion aims to help LaLiga compete globally with the Premier League.

LaLiga saw considerable development in North America over the last several years. In a partnership with multinational media company Relevent, LaLiga sought promotion for both the league and sport in North America. That successful venture turned LaLiga into one of the most popular leagues in the United States. Now, it trails just the Premier League, Liga MX and MLS.

Recently, LaLiga sold its TV rights in North America for a record deal. In 2021, ESPN acquired the U.S. rights to LaLiga on an eight-year deal for $1.4 billion.

With a resurgent Barcelona and the now-14-time Champions League winners in Real Madrid, LaLiga sees an opportunity for growth. In fact, a goal of LaLiga in its bid for Africa, India and the Middle East is to grow larger than the Premier League.

Competing with the Premier League

England’s Premier League is the undisputed champion of viewership around the globe. The EPL reportedly had about 3.2 billion viewers worldwide throughout the 2019-20 season. And more television viewers means more money. Broadcasting contracts generated around $165 million for the Premier League for the 19/20 season. To put this into perspective, LaLiga brought in about $77 million during the same timeframe. The Spanish league are banking on Galaxy Racer to help close that massive gap by expanding their range to MENA.

LaLiga looks to extend league’s reach into MENA and India

“The LaLiga brand is powerful, but its potential remains untapped amongst Millennials and Gen Z in the MENA region,” claimed Galaxy Racer CEO Paul Roy.

“Our opportunity is to connect with a younger audience in a way that resonates with them.  Galaxy Racer has a market reach that will help unlock that potential and elevate LaLiga to an aspirational brand for target audiences in the region.”

Galaxy Racer is reportedly the biggest esports, gaming and lifestyle company in the world.  Not only are they certainly a massive organization, but they also have a huge presence in the MENA area. This was obviously an area of focus for LaLiga officials.

“With the market set to enter a new era of growth, this is the right moment to take our business in the region to the next level and attract the next generation of younger sport fans to our competition,” Oscar Mayo, LaLiga Executive Director said.

“This historic partnership is set to boost the popularity of LaLiga and football in MENA and the Indian subcontinent.  With Galaxy Racer’s extensive experience in the region as one of the world’s largest transmedia powerhouses we believe they are the ideal partner to help us reach a fresh new audience and unlock the true potential of LaLiga in the region.”

LaLiga’s managing director for the MENA area also praised the move. “This agreement ensures not only a bright future for football in MENA and the Indian subcontinent, but also for LaLiga and our clubs,” stated league executive Maite Ventura.

LaLiga’s growth

The joint venture extends LaLiga’s reach into major soccer countries like Morocco, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Turkey India and Qatar. Also, the two companies began working on events, merchandise, and actual tournaments in the aforementioned area.

PHOTO: IMAGO / Insidefoto