End of FAM, MP & Silva part­ner­ship?

New Straits Times - - Sport - RE­PORTS BY AJIT­PAL SINGH ajit­pals­ingh@nst.com.my

BIT­TER: Both par­ties mull le­gal bat­tle over an­nual spon­sor­ship

THE part­ner­ship was sup­posed to el­e­vate the pres­tige of the M-League but af­ter just one year, FAM’s RM1.26 bil­lion deal over 15 years with in­ter­na­tional me­dia rights firm, MP & Silva, is now head­ing to­wards col­lapse.

In an agree­ment signed in Jan­uary last year with the FA of Malaysia (FAM) to be­come part­ners of the M-League, MP & Silva pledged a guar­an­teed an­nual spon­sor­ship of RM70 mil­lion be­tween 2016 and 2021, fol­lowed by RM85 mil­lion (2022-2024), RM92 mil­lion (20252027) and RM103 mil­lion (20282031).

The part­ner­ship saw the for­ma­tion of the Foot­ball Malaysia Li­a­bil­ity Lim­ited Part­ner­ship (FMLLP) which now man­ages the league.

Late last year, MP & Silva handed over RM20 mil­lion to FAM as part of the agree­ment for the 2016 sea­son.

The M-League also man­aged to gen­er­ate RM21 mil­lion through spon­sor­ship deals in the just-con­cluded sea­son.

Un­der the deal, MP & Silva needed to top up another RM29 mil­lion to make up the RM70 mil­lion guar­an­teed sum for the 2016 sea­son but de­spite sev­eral re­minders from FAM and FMLLP, they failed to do so.

Both par­ties have for­warded the mat­ter to their re­spec­tive le­gal de­part­ments and it is learnt that FAM are de­mand­ing com­pen­sa­tion, to­tal­ing RM420 mil­lion as the deal has a six-year lock-in pe­riod.

MP & Silva was ini­tially pre­pared to cover the an­tic­i­pated short­falls in the open­ing sea­sons when they be­came part­ners of the M-League but Po­lice lodged an ob­jec­tion against Darul Ta’zim striker el­i­gi­bil­ity on Oct 27 but with­drew it on the same day for un­known rea­sons.

and pay a fee to get the cer­ti­fi­ca­tion,” he said.

FAM said clubs with new own­ers can­not change the names of the teams un­less they get the ap­proval of the Sports Com­mis­sioner’s Of­fice (SCO).

There were talks that FAM Cup club AirAsia All-Stars want to buy the in­ter­na­tional com­pany has since changed their busi­ness strat­egy un­der new ma­jor­ity stake­hold­ers from China.

MP & Silva had of­fered FAM a re­vised deal of RM53 mil­lion a sea­son to the FMLLP board at a meet­ing in Lon­don in Septem­ber, or as an al­ter­na­tive, a satel­lite broad­caster be the new part­ner of the M-League for RM58 mil­lion per sea­son.

“The pro­posal from the satel­lite broad­caster was re­jected im­me­di­ately by the FMLLP board as MP & Silva could not pro­vide com­pre­hen­sive de­tails on some as­pects,” a source told Time­s­port yes­ter­day.

“As for the re­vised of­fer from MP & Silva, FAM pre­sented it to their ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee in Kuala Lumpur and it was also re­jected.

“The deal is set to end as lawyers rep­re­sent­ing both par­ties are pre­par­ing for the next course of ac­tion. MP & Silva will un­likely be part of the league next year.”

The source said the M-League will not be af­fected if MP & Silva de­cides to end the deal as other com­pa­nies are in­ter­ested to be part­ners.

over Premier League side DRBHi­com, who are con­tem­plat­ing to with­draw from the com­pe­ti­tion.

“All clubs are regis­tered with us. New own­ers can­not change the names of teams with­out go­ing through the pro­cesses with the SCO and other rel­e­vant par­ties. But this prac­tice is al­lowed,” Afandi added.

Juan Lucero’s

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