Learning from the experts: Rugby Expo 2018 to showcase successes from other challenger sports in pro game-focused conference programme

Rugby has taken massive strides but, in most parts of the world, remains a challenger sport, fighting for audience, mindshare and media attention.

In this year’s hard-hitting pro game conference programme, Rugby Expo will recognise the achievements of both codes over the past 25 years and look to other successful challenger sports for inspiration and practical lessons on growing commercially successful sports brands operating in tough and crowded markets.

Delegates will hear from senior representatives of a range of sports about their secrets for success, and from CEOs of union and league clubs who will put the lessons through the filter of the real-life challenges facing the sport today.

As in previous years, Rugby Expo will be split into two parts, with the morning/afternoon sessions focusing on the professional game before attention switches to grass roots and community rugby from late afternoon onwards.

The pro game conference sessions will include:


Following the success of the format introduced at the last edition of Rugby Expo, top club CEOs from both codes take part in a no-hold-barred discussion of the burning playing, commercial and administrative issues of the day.


Senior representatives of new or ‘challenger’ sports share their secrets for establishing successful sports brands against tough competition in crowded markets.

This session will feature presentations from the likes of Basketball Champions League, Formula E and Major League Soccer.


While centrally negotiated media contracts remain a major pillar of pro club income, creative and consistent use of club assets to deliver effective content through club-owned channels provides exciting new ways to enhance sponsorship appeal and value, boost retail revenue and build long-term brand value.

In this session a team of experts explain how in-house media can impact on the bottom line without breaking the bank.


Jaimie Fuller, Chairman of challenger sportswear brand Skins, will take to the stage to deliver a hard-hitting and thought-provoking lecture explaining why rugby’s opportunity for exponential global growth is right here, right now.

To discuss sponsorship or exhibitor opportunities or to find out more about attending Rugby Expo 2018 as a delegate, contact Jenny Forbes, Head of Business Development, on +44 (0) 843 289 0583 or at jenny@rugbyexpo.com.