MAN OF THE MATCH BECOMES ‘OFFICIAL’
November 23, 2007 (PRLEAP.COM) Sports NewsThe Man of the Match trademarks are licensed by Man of the Match Limited which acquired the worldwide rights to it from registered owner, OFS Group. The trademark was submitted in 2002 and in 2006/07 it was given full Registered status throughout the EU and numerous other countries in the world including the use of the Man of the Match concept for competitions and voting games.
Man of the Match Ltd has already launched its new website www.manofthematch.net which hosts an SMS and internet voting game currently for the English Premier League only. Registered fans can vote FREE for their Man of the Match for any English Premier League match and the footballer with the highest number of votes in each match played is then the ‘Official Man of the Match’. Cash prizes are available and winners are independently drawn from those fans who voted for the awarded ‘Man of the Match’ footballer. At the end of each season all votes cast during that season will be entered into the Fantasy Man of the Match Championship game where the top rated registered members will stand the chance of winning a share of a £000’s prize pot
The business is led by Peter Rapaport (chairman) and Marc Maley (CEO), and both are aware that some governing bodies and indeed some sponsors might be unhappy when they realise that many of their Man of the Match competitions are in fact in breach of the registered trademark. However, seeking recourse to the courts for licence payments is not the primary aim of the business and, according to Peter Rapaport, Man of the Match Limited will not act like some existing trademark owners in the sports sector by seeking to charge the highest possible fees for access to rights. Peter explains:
“Strictly speaking, any use of our Man of the Match trademark by governing bodies or sponsors throughout most of the world is a breach of our IP. But we are realists, and we have not entered this business simply to secure income through the courts. Instead we have used the trademarks as the basis for our web-based voting and gaming proposition we have launched to our own customers, and which we offer to our partners under sub-licensing deals for their marketing and other initiatives. Our own games are for registered members who pay an upfront annual charge of £5 – in this way we are not in conflict with the new internet gaming regulations as we do not charge for votes. Our partners however can use our site for their own competitions where free hospitality, tickets, and other non-cash match-day prizes can be offered. In this way they avoid breaching IP but also have the advantage of using our site where we manage the whole online and SMS voting process as well as website hosting and prize distribution.”
CEO Marc Maley adds: “Our proposition reflects that fact that there is tremendous competition from sponsors and pundits about which footballer, or any other sportsman, actually is the Official Man of the Match – our view is that it is for the fans to decide, and our site let’s them do just that.”
Man of the Match has already had a very successful partnership with United Biscuits and The Mirror Group for the Rugby World Cup and they are confident that more deals along these lines will follow. A key partner incentive is that Man of the Match Limited will always share with partners the net profit of sponsorship, MMS, WAP link messaging, online advertising income and permissionable marketing.
Man of the Match Limited already have over 1000 votes each weekend on www.manofthematch.net Aside from the voting game the site also includes social networking opportunities such as fan interaction forums and user profiles which enable fans to become a pundit. The site includes video match reports and match statistics as well as a Footballers’ Hall of Fame showing the race for the Man of the Match of the season.
For more information please call Duncan Mackenzie-Reid on 0208 334 5750 (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Beccy Whittles on 0208 334 5749
Notes to Editors
Peter Rapaport is a qualified accountant and has a successful record of investment and management in the UK leisure market and he has been a director of a number of OFEX and NASDAQ companies in the UK and US. Marc Maley is a former consultant at MIP and he created one of the Top 10 websites for the Euro 2000 football championships.
Man of the Match Limited is the worldwide sole licensee of the Man of the Match trademarks from the registered owner OFS Group Ltd. Both trademarks are registered in classes 9,16,38 and 41, European Community 002805513, European Community 002805232, Via WIPO 924918 – Russian Federation, China, Japan, Australia and USA, and Via WIPO 924920 – Russian Federation, China, Japan, Australia and USA. Separate registrations are pending for the Philippines and South Africa.