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Ironman ‘among interested parties’ to organise Barcelona Marathon

The Ironman triathlon series is reported to be among the interested parties in taking over the running of the Barcelona Marathon from the RPM-MKTG agency.

The Barcelona City Council is seeking an operator for the marathon and the half-marathon for the 2021-2023 cycle, reports Palco23. The agreement includes the option to extend the contract until 2025.

It is reported that the estimated cost of running the event from 2021 to 2023 is €6.75m ($7.5m), but this figure would rise to €11.2m if the deal is extended through to 2025. Palco23 reports that RPM-MKTG is keen on retaining its contract but faces competition from Wanda-owned Ironman, which is said to view Spain as a strategic growth market.

RPM-MKTG has organised the event since 2006 and the number of competitors has grown from 4,400 to 19,000 during that time. Ironman, through Wanda Sports, already organises the Madrid Marathon.

Palco23 added that companies interested in applying for the Barcelona Marathon contract must have billed at least €2.5m during one of the last three years and have experience of hosting similar-level events.

Sponsorship of the event is viewed as critical from a revenue-generating perspective, with Palco23 estimating that it must account for at least 29 per cent of the budget. The Barcelona Marathon is currently title sponsored by Swiss insurance firm Zurich, with Asics and CaixaBank serving as premium sponsors.

This year’s Barcelona Marathon takes place on March 15.