Toyota's AFL renewal is richest sponsorship in Australian sports history
Australian Rules football’s Australian Football League has extended its sponsorship agreement with Toyota, the Japanese automotive giant, in a deal worth A$18.5 million ($13.1 million) a year, reported to be the most valuable sports sponsorship ever in Australian sport.
The new contract, which runs until 2023, moves the AFL ahead of Tennis Australia as the sports body that earns the most from sponsorship, The Australian has reported, replacing the previous deal which was worth A$16 million a year.
Last year, Tennis Australia agreed Australian Open naming rights with Kia and an associate sponsorship deal with Luzhou Laojiao, the Chinese liquor company, in deals worth a combined A$16 million.
The AFL deal includes support for the AFLW, the recently-launched women's competition.
Gillon McLachlan, the AFL’s chief executive, said: “Our partnership started in 2004 and over that time the contribution Toyota has made to footy, not only in the AFL but at a community level, is nothing short of amazing.”
Toyota, a top-tier ‘TOP’ sponsor of the Olympic Games, is also a partner of the Australian Olympic and Paralympic teams and of Cricket Australia, in a four-year deal renewed in 2017.
The extension of the Toyota deal represents more good news for the AFL after a new domestic broadcasting rights deal kicked in in 2017.
Pay-television operator Foxtel, commercial broadcaster Seven Network and telecoms company Telstra are paying a combined A$2.5 billion over six years.
It represented the biggest sports rights deal ever signed in Australia when it was agreed in 2015.