Partnerships Activation Manager – EPCR
Role: Partnerships Activation Manager
Reports to: Commercial & Marketing Director
Location: Lausanne, Switzerland
European Professional Club Rugby (EPCR) is the organiser of the Heineken Champions Cup and European Rugby Challenge Cup tournaments. Formerly known as ERC for the period 1995-2014, EPCR was established in 2014 with headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland.
EPCR has the following shareholders: Federation Française de Rugby (FFR), Federazione Italiana Rugby (FIR), Irish Rugby Football Union (IRFU), Rugby Football Union (RFU), Scottish Rugby Union (SRU), Welsh Rugby Union (WRU), Ligue Nationale de Rugby (LNR) and Premiership Rugby (PRL).
The Heineken Champions Cup and Challenge Cup tournaments feature 20 clubs each, which have qualified on merit from their respective domestic leagues – Gallagher Premiership Rugby, the TOP 14 and the Guinness PRO14.
EPCR is looking for an experienced, proactive and confident partnerships activation manager to handle and develop all customer relationships of EPCR: sponsors, media partners, TV broadcasters, clubs and Finals host venues in order to promote growth and improvement for both parties. The role requires best in class account management practices, creative thinking to boost EPCR partners’ return on investment via digital / new media marketing opportunities amongst others, and commercial acumen to detect and execute opportunities to grow business with the partners. The role requires extensive traveling across Europe to meet all partners on a regular basis and attend EPCR competitions, excellent verbal and oral communication skills, creativity and great attention to details combined with organisation skills as the role’s demanding conditions will require the candidate to wisely manage their priorities.
- Ensure correct contract delivery for EPCR sponsors, media partners, TV broadcasters and Finals Host Venues, liaising with Events & Operations department on a regular basis
- Constantly think through, sell and execute new activation opportunities with existing clients, to boost the value for money of their investments to both EPCR and the Partner – both offline and online via creative digital marketing campaigns in particular
- Develop excellent working relationships with Club Marketing & Commercial Directors, in order to create long term win-win relationships
- Create and nurture strong relationships with key EPCR partner contacts
- Attend all EPCR competition weekends to ensure contractual rights are successfully delivered, meet with existing partners and commercial prospects
- Management of the Champions Rugby Village project at each EPCR Finals, coordinating various agencies and related third parties
- Prepare and deliver Annual Activity Reports to all Partners, with the highest degree of quality and professionalism, and continuously inform Partners of key activities and successes at EPCR
- Design, planning and delivery of a successful annual ‘Partner Day’ for all EPCR clients
- Participate in Marketing & Commercial Team meetings related to Media Plans, Corporate and Tournament Branding, various Marketing initiatives and Sponsorship Sales
- Design, plan and execute top-level VIP Client Engagement hospitality programmes at EPCR matches throughout the season
- Management of 1 Partnerships Activation Executive, with new reports gradually added as EPCR expands its client base
- Participate whenever required in commercial development and sales activity of the organisation
- Lead and negotiate successful renewals of EPCR partnerships
- Financial planning and budget monitoring for areas of responsibility
- Constantly keep up to date with marketing trends, sport business news and sponsorship industry
Qualifications & Skills
- 5 to 10 years’ experience in an account management and/or partnership activation related position in the sports marketing industry
- Relevant experience within marketing, having successfully delivered offline and digital marketing campaigns for corporate partners
- Track record in successful brand activation for a rights holder, federation, or club/team, whether working from the rights holder, activation agency or brand side (ideally a combination of these)
- Experience with business development/commercial functions in either cold acquisition of new clients, or upselling solutions to existing partners
- Strong commercial acumen with excellent negotiation skills
- Diplomatic and tactful with demonstrable experience in managing and nurturing strong relationships with corporate partners
- Experienced Project Manager, organised and meticulous
- Excellent oral and written communication skills as well as confident public speaking
- A natural leader, able to animate regular meetings with key partners, sell ideas both externally and internally, and motivate others
- Naturally curious and enthusiastic personality with an open mind and creative spirit
- Good judgement abilities to successfully balance key decisions between EPCR and partners’ interests
- Ability to work under pressure and manage priorities
- Passion for sports – experience in the rugby business would be a plus
- Team player and confident independent worker
- Willingness to travel across Europe, including weekends (9 EPCR competition weekends per year)
- Fluency in English
- Fluency in French would be a significant plus
How to Apply
To apply, the candidates should send the following:
- Letter of application highlighting relevant experience
- Up to date curriculum vitae
Applications must be submitted via SRI’s Apply Now button above.
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