Dentsu inks deal to be exclusive commercial agency for the AFC in Japan

AFC agrees media rights deal for lucrative Japanese market.

by Tom King

Dentsu inks deal to be exclusive commercial agency for the AFC in Japan
  • Dentsu has historically managed AFC's Japanese rights
  • The AFC recently took back Japanese contract from Football Marketing Asia 

The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has entered into a commercial agreement with Japanese advertising giant Dentsu to exclusively market the soccer body's commercial properties in Japan.

The agreement comprises the AFC’s major national team and club competitions, including Asia’s flagship national team competitions – the AFC 2022 World Cup qualifiers, the AFC Asian Cup China 2023, the AFC Women’s Asian Cup India 2022 and the Continent’s premier club competition - the AFC Champions League.

Tokyo headquartered Dentsu has a well-established relationship with the AFC and have represented the AFC and managed its commercial rights exclusively in Japan over the last two decades.

The governing body for soccer in Asia recently took back from Football Marketing Asia (FMA) the sale of media rights in Japan. FMA remains the AFC’s exclusive agency for all commercial rights worldwide, excluding Japan and (in relation to the sale of media rights) the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

Commenting on the agreement Dato’ Windsor John, the AFC general secretary, said: “The AFC is delighted to welcome Dentsu Inc. to the ever-growing family of commercial partners for the 2021-24 period, as our exclusive commercial agency in Japan.

“Japan are one of the most successful footballing nations in both the men’s and women’s game, not only in Asia, but also across the globe. This is a significant agreement that paves the way for millions of passionate fans in Japan to access and engage with the AFC’s world-class competitions.

“We are thankful to Dentsu Inc. for their continued investment in Asian football, and with their extensive background and long history in marketing football in Asia and Japan, we are confident that they will play a pivotal role in driving the interest and consumption of Asia’s finest competitions amongst one of the most passionate fan bases across the Continent.”