The Racecourse Media Group (RMG) has promoted Martin Stevenson to the position of CEO, with the former Finance Director bringing considerable accounting and media experience to the role.
Stevenson joined RMG as Finance Director in 2007, and has since developed ‘deep and intimate knowledge’ of the company’s business and operations.
“I am extremely excited and honoured to take up the position of RMG CEO. I look forward to working even more collaboratively with our 34 racecourse shareholders, whose media interests have been entrusted to RMG,” said Stevenson.
“RMG has been a phenomenal success story since its inception as Racing UK back in 2004, having posted year-on-year increases in licence fees payable to its racecourse shareholders nearly every year of trading. It shows what can be achieved via a collective approach to commercialising our racecourses’ media and data rights.”
In addition to his time spent at RMG, Stevenson is a qualified Chartered Certified Accountant and has served as Managing Director of the Newspaper Licensing Agency and Group Financial Controller of Trinity Mirror plc.
Roger Lewis, Chairman of RMG, commented: “On behalf of the RMG Board, RMG’s racecourses and all the RMG staff, I am delighted to announce Martin as the new CEO of the Group.
“After an extensive and rigorous recruitment process, during which we interviewed a number of outstanding candidates, the RMG Board unanimously voted for this appointment. Martin’s vision for RMG is bold and imaginative. His relationship with our shareholder racecourses is very special and Martin is passionate that RMG can, and will, deliver the best returns for racing.”
Stevenson’s promotion follows yesterday’s announcement that the agency will provide coverage of Newmarket’s QIPCO 2000 Guineas Day and the Epsom Downs Derby Day in the lucrative Hong Kong market.
The two races were classified as World Pool events under the terms of an agreement between the Hong Kong Jockey Club, The Jockey Club, UK Tote Group and RMG, allowing the latter to provide coverage in the territory, where turnover has increased by over 118% since 2012.
An additional partnership last month saw RMG’s Timeline TV collaborate with Racing TV to launch a new virtual studio in Ealing, West London, with the aim of taking televised horse racing coverage ‘to the next level’.
Prior to this, the group – in cooperation with Sports Information Services – expanded British and Irish racings international exposure via an agreement with Sportsbet Australia, allowing the operator to broadcast and take bets on the sport.
“The RMG business model has been severely tested during the last 12 months, but it has demonstrated great resilience, providing vital media rights income for our racecourses,” Lewis continued.
“This has been achieved due to the extraordinary efforts of our racecourses who have brilliantly kept horse racing running. We are proud to serve them. We are now slowly emerging out of the pandemic and Martin is undoubtedly the right person to lead RMG into its next phase of growth over the coming years.”
Stevenson replaces Richard FitzGerland in the post of CEO, following the latter’s departure in September 2020 after holding the position for nearly 12 years.