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IMG’s Wood lands Amazon sports role in Europe

(Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

Online retail giant Amazon has recruited Tim Wood, a long-serving executive at the IMG agency, as its head of business affairs, sport at Prime Video Europe.

Wood has taken up the newly-created London-based position after finishing up his work at IMG at the end of last year. He was with the agency for 11 years and most recently held the position of senior vice-president of content and channels.

The appointment bolsters Amazon’s sports operations in Europe, which are led by Alex Green, Amazon Prime Video’s managing director of sport in Europe and to whom Wood will report.

Amazon kicked off its search for a European head of sports rights acquisitions in March last year.

Since then, the online retail operator has further expanded its sports rights footprint in Europe, securing a package of Uefa Champions League rights in Germany from 2021-22 to 2023-24. Amazon Prime Video also kicked off its live UK coverage of English Premier League matches in December.

A package of domestic rights to tennis’ French Open were also acquired from 2021 to 2023, while Amazon finalised a rights deal for Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) Tour rights in the UK and Ireland from 2020 to 2023.

Amazon also holds rights in the UK and Ireland to tennis’ US Open from 2018 to 2022, along with ATP World Tour rights from 2019 to 2023. In 2018, Amazon Prime Video secured rights in over 200 countries to the Laver Cup, the international men’s tennis tournament between Europe and the rest of the world team.

SportBusiness understands that Wood will not be replaced directly at IMG, with his responsibilities split among the content and channels team, which is led by Richard Wise.

Wood (pictured, left) was responsible for running business development at IMG Media’s content and channels division, a role that encompassed Sport 24, the agency’s in-flight and in-ship service, and third-party digital platforms.

He began his career at IMG in 2005 as a sponsorship analyst, before spending three years in international sales at UK-based production company Sunset+Vine.

In August 2018, Amazon strengthened its stateside operations with the hire of Marie Donoghue, a veteran of nearly two decades at cable sports broadcaster ESPN, to the new US-based role of vice-president of global sports video.