THE SPORTS ENTREPRENEURS
Over Two Decades of Learning
This time, I am sharing some of my stories of 27 years in the trenches of Sports Marketing, how I got into the industry and my 23 year journey as a Sports Marketing Entrepreneur in Asia. Hope you enjoy some of the stories and insights into TSA and our evolution as a company.
- How I got started, from tennis in Cologne, Germany to University at TCU in the US
- American Airlines experience, Official Airline of the FIFA World Cup 1994 (Concacaf Gold Cup)
- First real job in Hong Kong with Asia Sports (World Sports Group – now Lagardere Sports)
- Start of TSA in 1997 during the Asian Financial Crisis
- TSA 1.0 to 5.0
- TSA 1.0 – WWE agent in Asia story – US$ 170 million later
- TSA 2.0 – Media agent, representing US Open tennis, BWF, ITTF, PSM and other premium content
- TSA 3.0 – started with a painful experience, internally created and launch of GLORY Kickboxing, new revenue streams, Branded Real Estate
- TSA 4.0 – Digital experience, OTT – Sportsfix launch, Blockchain experience (ICO), E-Sports, Football Division
- TSA 5.0 – TSA post Covid-19 – focus on Consulting, Beat Covid-19 products for the Live Sports industry, new revenue streams for Sports & Esports, Sports Fund
- BHAG: Generated US$ 500 million in the past 20 years for the industry – NEW GOAL is to generate US$ 1 billion in next 10 years
Marcus Luer is Asia’s #1 Sports Marketing Entrepreneur and the Group CEO of TSA (Total Sports Asia), Asia’s global sports marketing agency which he founded 23 years ago in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Marcus is a thought after industry expert and speaker and has been featured on CNBC, BBC News, Bloomberg Asia, regularly presents at major global sports conferences and has contributed to many international newspapers and industry magazines articles.
He recently launched his own Sports Entrepreneurs Podcast Series featuring top sports executives and entrepreneurs from around the world.
Sports Business International (SBI) magazine voted him into the “SBI 200 Team”, comprising of the most influential leaders in the industry over the past 18 years.
He is also the Co-Founder of GLORY Sports International (GSI), the #1 Kickboxing League in the world.
Marcus also created the Branded Real Estate (BRE) concept, a brand consulting business to the Real Estate industry.
BRE has developed a very unique set of skills which matches the power of Superbrands with Residential Real Estate projects in the region. From the Michael Schumacher World Tower to two Armani Residences in India and China, TSA BRE has developed projects with a combined GDV value of over US$ 1 billion and is the leading agency globally in this space.
Living and working in the sports industry in Asia for over 25 years, Marcus is considered one of the Founding fathers of Sports Marketing in Asia and continues to follow his passion to develop the Asian and global sports industry.
At the end of 1997, at the age of 29 and after three years in Asia working for World Sports Group (WSG), Marcus founded TSA. Marcus’ drive and leadership has guided the company to what it is today, Asia’s global leader in sports content and branding solutions. TSA has created over US$ 500 million worth of new revenue for rights holders globally over the past 20 years and targets to generate US$ 1 billion over the next 10 years for Asian sports and Esports properties.
TSA represents and/or has worked with major global sports brands from Premier League Football Clubs, Formula One teams, WWE, US Open Tennis and a host of Olympic Sports Federations (BWF, ITTF, AIBA, IAAF, FINA, UCI, etc) over the last 23 years. TSA also partnered with the SPARTAN RACE series in 2015 to develop the first events in Asia.
TSA’s role is always focused on developing new commercial opportunities and build larger platforms for rights holders, events, Venues and brands in the region or worldwide. TSA’s clients range from broadcasters, Asian multinationals to global corporations and governments seeking to maximize the power of sports for their own brand benefit.
TSA provides a range of consulting services to these clients, for example, as the Commercial Partnership Consultant to KL Sports City, TSA created Malaysia’s first Venue Naming rights deal with the Axiata Arena. TSA is currently developing a 10 Year Sports Masterplan for an Asian Government, including grassroots, education to elite athlete training concepts. Sports Education is becoming a new driving force in Asia and TSA has partnered with the prestigious Loughborough University in the UK.
TSA Football is focused on serving the growing Asian Football market, including Player transfers, Football Club/Leagues Consulting services, sponsorship and other fund raising.
Total Esports (TES), is the latest venture, combining the expertise in sponsorship, media and events from the traditional world of sports to the booming Esports ecosystem. TES works with top E-gaming publishers, platforms and teams in Asia.
Marcus’ ventured into the Digital start up space with SPORTSFIX, a Netflix of Sports concept in Asean. Sportsfix focus is live and on Demand content delivered via an OTT (Over the Top) platform incorporating Blockchain technology targeted towards the new generation of sports fans which heavily consume content on their mobile devices.
In early 2012, Marcus teamed up with a group of blue chip investors and Fight Sports industry experts to launch GLORY Kickboxing, the premier kickboxing League in the world. Marcus used his 20 years of experience across the global sports marketing world to start the new venture. GLORY has produced over 70 events since its inception in major cities around the world from London, New York to Tokyo and will continue to expand its reach with more events in the future, including events in China and across media platforms worldwide.
Marcus is not just an avid sports executive and fan but also gets into the action. You will see him regularly participate in Triathlons or other races across the region. He is also a member and active on the board of YPO’s (Young Presidents Organization) Malaysian Chapter since 2007.