Cricket Ireland is the governing body for the men’s and women’s game throughout Ireland, with ultimate responsibility for its national and international aspects. The future of Irish cricket is very bright given the growth of the sport driven by significant success on the international stage in the last decade leading to an unprecedented visibility for Irish cricket at home and abroad.
Our emergence as a sport of national significance is growing following the elevation of Cricket Ireland to ICC Full Membership and Test Status, along with entry into the sport’s Future Tours Programme (FTP) that now sees Ireland playing all three formats of the game at the highest level for the foreseeable future.
The Board of Cricket Ireland recently approved its new Strategic Plan 2021-2023. This strategy is part of a two-stage approach designed to synchronise with the ICC funding cycle to ensure that resources will be available for a more expansive strategy from 2024 onwards – with the entire span of the period 2021-2031 shaped to deliver the overall vision to ‘Make Cricket Mainstream’ in Ireland.
The new strategic plan outlines the need to invest further in our foundations to ensure we have a stronger, more sustainable platform to realise our longer-term vision and objectives. The generation of significant and sustainable commercial income will be one of the primary means of building this platform, albeit that the Board is equally cognisant of the importance of the visibility and reach of the game domestically to help achieve the overall vision to ‘Make Cricket Mainstream’ in Ireland.
Over the years, Cricket Ireland’s commercial programme has evolved from a primarily sponsor-led revenue model to the point whereby media income has become our largest commercial revenue stream, and our 2nd -largest revenue stream overall. With the recent development of a Media Rights and Digital Strategy, this evolution to a broadcast-led revenue model now has a structured strategic framework, which incorporates the imperative to commercially exploit other relevant revenue
streams such as audio, digital, streaming, fan engagement initiatives, data rights, e-gaming, NFT’s etc. The recent completion of a six-year broadcast deal, our presence in the men’s FTP, the possibility of qualification for the ICC Women’s Championship, the creation of attractive ‘best v best’ elite domestic competitions, and the recent development of a live-streaming production deal gives Cricket Ireland the opportunity to exploit these opportunities and to strengthen Irish cricket for its next phase
ROLE AND PURPOSE OF THE POSITION
Reporting to the chief Executive Officer (CEO), this newly established role of Chief Commercial Officer will take responsibility for driving the organisation’s commercial revenue growth. The incumbent will successfully seek to exploit existing commercial properties, leverage opportunities envisaged within the new Media Rights and Digital Strategy, create innovative commercial
programmes, coordinate and line-manage the commercial portfolio, and ensure the appropriate delivery and management of commercial partner rights and programmes.
To take overall responsibility for all Cricket Ireland commercial and relevant operational team and to drive revenue growth in line with budget forecasts.
To develop the Cricket Ireland commercial strategy in line with the new strategic plan, integrating the following key components:
o Implement the Domestic and International media rights strategy and analyse the market to create the full demand across Pay, FTA and OTT operators.
o Procure the successful implementation of Cricket Ireland obligations to its media rights partners.
o Ensure optimum revenue generation from all reserved rights carved out of existing media agreements.
o Develop the Cricket Ireland direct-to-consumer strategy through data-focused OTT and Digital platforms.
o Create world-class tiered partnership structures across Cricket Ireland events.
o To take the lead role in identifying and developing relationships with potential sponsors, proactively lead on contract negotiations and maintain strong and effective relationships with existing sponsors.
o Create a domestic and international event strategy to maximise reach and revenue for Cricket Ireland.
o Work with the relevant teams to develop a membership strategy that maximises reach and revenue for Cricket Ireland whilst developing a membership and marketing team strategy.
o Identify new commercial opportunities and provide creativity and innovation to continue to grow and develop revenues in line with the commercial strategy.
Drive activities that generate increased value whilst ensuring alignment with company vision and strategy. As strategic changes and opportunities evolve, ensure consistent market execution is developed and maintained.
Collaborate with the Marketing and Communications team to provide the organisation with business strategy in the areas of digital marketing (Performance & CRM), customer-focused strategy (segmentation, acquisition, and retention), fan engagement, eCommerce, digital technologies, platform development, digital content and asset monetisation.
Work with the relevant teams on ticketing strategy, including pricing and delivery.
Maintain/build strong relationships with business partners to ensure partnership-enhancing initiatives, and to develop content partners across cable, satellite and digital distribution platforms to foster and grow linear TV and digital content.
Provide support and advice to member Provincial Unions (PU), coordinate commercial activities to ensure harmony across properties, and creatively explore opportunities for PU partners to activate off Cricket Ireland commercial programmes/activity.
Actively identify opportunities for accessing philanthropic funding to support playing programmes and infrastructure development.
Support Participation Department with sponsorship and commercial opportunities for the various participation programmes.
To prepare and manage budgets for department in line with requirements of business.
To issue regular reports on pipeline activity and opportunities.
EXPERIENCE AND COMPETENCIES
8+ years’ experience in commercial operations and/or Sports Marketing, within a rights holder, events and ticketing environment. Have an extensive domestic and international network within the media rights environment.
Proven track record of working on OTT direct-to-consumer media.
Proven track record of sponsorship acquisition.
Results-focused with high-value selling, negotiating and persuasive skills with a demonstrable track record.
Experience with strategic planning, marketing and delivery of large-scale events.
Proven ability developing, implementing and measuring sales and marketing activities.
Evidence of good commercial judgement and decision-making capabilities. Strong evidence of managing and developing key relationships.
Excellent written and oral communication skills with the ability to present at Board and senior executive level.
Strong financial literacy – able to develop a practical system of results to monitor progress against operating plans and objectives.
Experience of managing a P&L and sound financial management.
Excellent interpersonal skills to develop and manage relationships with key stakeholders both internal and external.
Strong leader, with experience of successfully leading and managing diverse teams.
Given the nature of the role, able to travel and work unsocial hours including evenings, weekends and public holidays.
TERM AND TENURE
Full-time and permanent
The package will include a salary and benefits commensurate with qualifications and experience.
The closing date for expressions of interest will be Monday 30 August 2021. A letter from the applicant describing what he or she would bring to the role and a concise CV setting out how and when the relevant experience has been gained should be sent by email to Recruitment@cricketireland.ie for the attention of the Human Resources. Please also state where you saw the vacancy.
Interviews (either online or face-to-face, depending on prevailing Government restrictions) will be held in the week beginning Monday 13 September 2021.
Desired role starting date – as soon as possible