SBD/April 29, 2013/Media

Ivy League Teaming With NeuLion To Launch Digital Network In August

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The Ivy League will launch its own digital network in August, and NeuLion will handle the video platform for the eight school channels plus a conference channel. The subscription model will offer fans the opportunity to buy an individual school channel or a conference package that includes programming for all of the schools. Pricing has not been established yet, but monthly and annual packages will be available. “Each of the schools has been streaming content on their own platforms, which meant that you could watch your team play if they’re at home, but if you wanted to see them play on the road, you had to buy that other school’s package too,” said Ivy League Exec Dir Robin Harris. “The digital network will be a huge step forward because now we’ll be able to offer all of the digital content on one platform.” NeuLion, which handles the digital and mobile programming technology for the Pac-12 and Big Ten, as well as close to 200 individual school sites, will make the Ivy League content available through online, mobile and tablets. The digital network will be accessed online through IvyLeagueSports.tv. The TV Everywhere model is critical these days, as NeuLion co-Founder and Exec VP/Marketplace Strategy Chris Wagner said the company is seeing that 30-40% of its content is being consumed on mobile devices and tablets.

LIVE, ON-DEMAND CONTENT FEATURED: The live programming will consist of football and basketball, in addition to most Olympic sports. On-demand content will feature archived games. Four schools already work with NeuLion, so they will easily move their old games to the new format. The other four are beginning to work on the transition over to NeuLion’s video platform. Schools handle production for events on their campus, while the Ivy League office will cover production for conference championship events. Events televised live by the conference’s media partner, NBC Sports Network, or games sold to any other TV network will not be available on the digital network. The men’s lacrosse championship rights are owned by ESPN. Advertising will be sold by NeuLion and the multimedia rights holders for each school. NeuLion’s technology will enable the digital network to run traditional advertising, such as banner ads and pre-rolls, as well as dynamic advertising in the broadcast of a live event that targets advertising to specific markets. Promotion will be coordinated jointly by the league and NeuLion, and most of the outreach will focus on alumni through online and print advertising.
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