Arsenal FC appoints Rippleffect to relaunch website

LONDON - Arsenal Football Club has appointed digital agency Rippleffect to re-launch its official website as part of a four-year partnership.

The agency has signed a four-year deal with the Premier League club that will encompass redevelopment of the back and front end of its website, provision of a new content management system and the improvement of site usability and data capture.

The club's website receives close to 40m page visits a month from fans across the globe and ranks as one of the world's most visited sporting websites.

The new website is due for launch in the summer of 2008 and will be hosted by NTT Europe Online, part of the online hosting company NTT Communications.

Richard Glover, operations manager at Arsenal Broadband, said: "Over the last five years Arsenal has continually embraced new digital technologies to communicate with fans, drive revenues and promote the club's brand.

"The new website will retain the elements that have made it one of world's biggest football club sites, but it will be streamlined to offer a more compelling user experience."

Rippleffect, which will be given official web partner status by the club, will also introduce a number of web 2.0 features to the website such as podcasts, vodcasts, RSS feeds, social bookmarking and user-generated content services.

Craig Johnson, a commercial director at Rippleffect, said: "Arsenal's target demographic is spread across the globe and comprises a range of mixed-ability users. It's imperative that the new website is engaging and offers them quick access to the various different parts of the club."

Earlier this month, ITV sold its 50% stake in its broadband joint venture with Arsenal FC to US millionaire Stan Kroenke for £22.7m.

Prior to this, the commercial broadcaster also sold stakes in Manchester United's MUTV and Liverpool's for £3.3m and £15.75m respectively.