May 20, 2008 09:19 ET

Italian Soccer Federation Assigns Worldwide Licensing to IMG

Defending FIFA World Cup Champions "Azzurri" Team Partner With IMG for Multi-Year Deal Covering Global Consumer Products, Publishing and Promotions

ROME--(Marketwire - May 20, 2008) - The Italian National Soccer Federation announced today a multi-year strategic partnership with IMG to develop a worldwide consumer products licensing program for the famous Squadra Azzurra soccer team, winner of four FIFA World Cups and current defending champions of the prestigious FIFA title.

"This is an important step in the commercial development of the Italian National Soccer Team as a real global sports brand," said Giancarlo Abete, President of the Italian Federation. "We are one of the most titled and successful teams in world soccer and we believe it fundamental to consolidate links with our worldwide fan base and satisfy market demand through a specific brand licensing program that represents our values and our unique football heritage. IMG, with its global presence and experience managing prestigious sports brands, is without a doubt the company best positioned to execute this objective."

"The Azzurri are not only the defending FIFA World Cup Champions, but one of the most successful teams in football history and consequently one of the absolute marquee properties in world soccer," said Bruno Maglione, IMG Executive Vice President and Co-Managing Director of IMG Worldwide Licensing. "Representing the world's best team in the world's biggest sport is obviously something we find very appealing and we look forward to a very successful partnership with the Italian Federation."

Under the multi-year agreement, IMG will partner with the Italian Federation to license and market the Italian National Team across a wide variety of product, publishing and promotional categories.

About the FIGC

The Federazione Italiana Giuoco Calcio (FIGC) was founded in 1898 and recognized by FIFA to become one of the UEFA's charter members in 1954. Team Italy is one of the most titled federations in world football having won 4 FIFA World Cups ('34, '38, '82 and '06), 1 UEFA European Cup ('68), and holding many other international honours at all levels. Last 2nd April 2007 Giancarlo Abete became its 28th president.

About IMG

IMG is the world's premier sports, entertainment and media enterprise.

Operating in 30 countries, IMG's diverse businesses include: consulting services; event ownership and management; fashion events and models representation; licensing; golf course design; and client representation in golf, tennis, broadcasting, speakers, European football, rugby, cricket, motor sports, coaching, Olympic sports and action sports. IMG Academies are the world's largest and most advanced multi-sport training and educational facilities, delivering world-class sports training experiences to more than 12,000 junior, collegiate, adult, and professional athletes each year.

Forstmann Little & Co. purchased IMG in 2004.

More information is available at

Contact Information