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Volume 10 No. 25


There will be "no escaping live coverage of Premier League football next season," according to Charles Sale of the London DAILY MAIL. The Premier League, which can be seen in 212 territories globally, has signed a contract with IMG Media to "supply extensive coverage on Sport 24, the 24-hour sports channel exclusively for the airline and cruise industry." The three-year contract will see both live and match highlights shown on "specially-equiped Lufthansa and Gulf Air planes as well as Norwegian cruise liners." IMG is also in discussions with "a number of other airlines and ship companies to expand the live coverage opportunities" now that the technology is available for boats and airplanes (DAILY MAIL, 12/3).

Austrian-based TV channel ServusTV "will live broadcast more than five hours from the German Hockey League's (DEL) inaugural Winter Game on Jan. 5," according to Manuel Weis of QUOTEN METER. The channel will start its broadcast at 3pm local time, which is an hour and a half before the opening face off. The post-game coverage will also air for more than an hour and is scheduled to end at 8:15pm. In addition, ServusTV, which is owned by energy drink producer Red Bull, will heavily promote the event in the weeks leading up to the game. On Dec. 21, the channel will air a 30-minute documentary at 6:25pm about the preparations of both teams, the Nuremberg Ice Tigers and Eisbären Berlin. Another documentary will air on Jan. 2 also at 6:25pm and take a look at the construction work needed to turn the Nuremberg Stadium into an outdoor ice rink (QUOTEN METER, 12/3).

The Netherlands Competition Authority has "given the green light" to Fox Int'l Channels’ acquisition of a 51% stake in Eredivisie Media and Marketing, the media and commercial arm of the Netherland's top football league, according to SOCCEREX. The initial deal between EMM and the broadcast subsidiary of News Corp. was "struck in August" for a reported €1B ($1.3B). EMM owns media rights to the Eredivisie and controls the Eredivisie live pay-TV channel. Fox will pay the €1B over the 12 years encompassing the '13-14 to '24-25 Dutch football seasons. The agreement will see FIC Benelux region Managing Dir Raymond van der Vliet join the management of EMM (SOCCEREX, 12/3).

BBC Sport is being "sold the rights to broadcast next year’s World Athletics Championships in Moscow" by its terrestrial rivals Channel 4, which wants to "concentrate on the Paralympics," according to Charles Sale of the London DAILY MAIL. The BBC was "due to take over the showcase track and field contract from Channel 4 in '14 on a four-year deal that includes the World Championships coming to London in '17." However, Channel 4 is understood to be pulling the plug on its agreement with the Int'l Association of Athletics Federation a year early because it is "upset about losing out to the BBC for the next term." Another factor was the fall-out from its savagely criticized coverage of the World Championships in '11 from Daegu, South Korea, "when hapless lead presenter Ortis Deley had to be replaced halfway through the event." As well as being favorites to retain the Paralympic rights for Rio in 2016 after its acclaimed London 2012 broadcasts, Channel 4 intends to "cover the Int'l Paralympic Committee’s World Athletics Championships from Lyon," France next year (DAILY MAIL, 11/30).

The marketing arm of German public broadcaster ARD, ARD Werbung Sales & Services (AS&S), "is very satisfied with the commercial bookings for its winter sports broadcasts," according to Alexander Krei of DWDL. The marketing company revealed presenting packages "are virtually sold out." AS&S Head of Sports Marketing Michael Lina said, "We are especially happy to have acquired two truly new programming sponsors with Honda and engelbert strauss that are convinced by ARD's powerful winter sports offers and are also co-sponsors of the Vierschanzentournee." Remaining presenting packages "are only available for the ski jumping world cup and the Nordic Ski World Championships."

In regards to ratings, ARD's winter sports broadcasts "pick up pace." An average of 3.46 million viewers tuned in to watch women's biathlon on Sunday, which equaled a market share of 20.4%. In the target demographic 14-49, ARD "obtained a 10.6% share." The following coverage of the men's luge world cup "still attracted 2.82 million viewers or a 16.6% share."

HARDWOOD WOES: German free-to-air TV channel Sport 1 attracted a disappointing 100,000 viewers to its broadcast of Sunday's Basketball Bundesliga match-up between Alba Berlin and Bayern Munich. The number equaled a 0.5% market share. In the target demographic, the market share was even lower with 0.3%. Prior to the game, Sport 1 commentator Frank Buschmann wrote on Facebook: "If this game doesn't attract even 200,000 to 300,000 fans then I don't know anymore" (DWDL, 12/3).