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BBL set for extended remit to drive growth of British basketball

The British Basketball Federation (BBF) has agreed a provisional 10-year extension to the British Basketball League’s (BBL) licence to operate the UK’s top men’s club competition, adding that the deal is set to herald a turning point in the way the professional game will be managed and developed.

The agreement is due to take effect from the expiry of the current licence in summer 2017 and comes after months of discussions between the BBF, the new International Basketball Federation (Fiba) approved governing body for basketball, and the top British clubs.

The new terms will require new performance standards to be set for clubs in the BBL, and a commitment to an improvement in those standards, with active monitoring by both the BBL and BBF.

These performance standards will include matters on and off the court and will include playing venues, seating capacities, coaching standards, player remuneration and welfare, and promotion and administration standards. Both parties are aiming for the licence to be fully signed off in the first quarter of 2017.

BBL chairman Sir Rodney Walker said: “This is an important milestone for the sport of basketball, and we are delighted with the progress so far to get a long-term license in place. We have already seen some important commercial developments in the men's professional game with the recent media deals with the BBC and the Perform Group, in addition to existing and extended commercial partnerships with Molten, Kappa, Genius Sports, Synergy and Tickets.com.

“The certainty these arrangements will provide, and the commitment of all parties to work together to drive up standards and the professionalism of the sport, can only be good for basketball. But this is the start of the journey and there remains much work to be done.”