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Volume 6 No. 212


BT has set aside £100M ($153M) to promote its new sports channels, "as it attempts to overthrow two decades of football dominance by BSkyB ahead of next season's Premier League," according to Arif Durrani of MEDIA WEEK. Sources said that marketing execs at the company "are preparing to boost" annual media expenses by £30M ($46M) this year, representing a 30% increase on '12, "to help with the launch." BT took out ads in the first five pages and last five pages of every single national newspaper available in the U.K. last weekend. Extensive outdoor activity "will follow in a campaign" that has been created by AMV BBDO with media handled by WPP’s Maxus. The campaign "is set to provide a welcome boost for many media owners this summer, as BSkyB is expected to respond in kind with heavy marketing activity of its own" (MEDIA WEEK, 5/10).

German free-to-air TV channel Sport1 "has received great ratings for its broadcast of the 2013 IIHF World Championship," according to Alexander Krei of DWDL. Germany's preliminary round matchup against the U.S. Sunday attracted 710,000 viewers. The number translated into a market share of 4.6%. In the target demographic 14-49, Germany's 3-0 loss obtained a 4.3% share. The ratings "are top results for Sport1" (DWDL, 5/13).

BAYERN PARTY: DWDL's Krei also reported German public broadcaster Bayerischer Rundfunk "obtained top ratings with its live broadcast of Bayern Munich's championship celebration on Saturday evening." The special edition of BR's "Blickpunkt Sport" was watched by 840,000 viewers and had a 3.2% market share. In the target demographic, Bayern's celebration received a 2.8% share. As expected, the program recorded its highest ratings in the Munich region, where it reached a 14.1% market share (DWDL, 5/13).

DWDL's Krei reported German free-to-air TV channel RTL attracted 5.91 million viewers to its broadcast of the Spanish F1 Grand Prix. In addition, Sky's coverage of the race, which was won by Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso, was watched by 330,000 viewers. Sky's broadcast of the race received a 2.5% share (DWDL, 5/13).

GIRO: DWDL's Krei also reported pan-European broadcaster Eurosport "recorded average ratings for its broadcast of the ninth stage of the Giro d'Italia" on Sunday. The cycling race attracted a total of 140,000 viewers, which equaled a 0.9% share. In the target demographic, Eurosport's Giro coverage had a 0.5% share (DWDL, 5/13).

FERGUSON FAREWELL: DWDL's Krei reported German pay-TV channel Sky "obtained satisfying ratings for its broadcast of ManU Manager Alex Ferguson's last home game on Sunday." The game attracted 40,000 viewers. In the target demographic, ManU's 2-1 victory against Swansea City received a 0.3% share (DWDL, 5/13).

SECOND BUNDESLIGA: DWDL's Krei also reported German pay-TV channel Sky attracted 410,000 viewers to its 2nd Bundesliga broadcasts on Sunday. Sky obtained a "great" 2.5% market share. In the target demographic, the network recorded a 3.3% share (DWDL, 5/13).

EUROLEAGUE FINAL FOUR: The Euroleague Final Four championship basketball game Sunday between Greek club Olympiacos Piraeus and Spanish club Real Madrid, broadcast by Teledeporte (TDP), was the most viewed game in the league's history, with two million viewers and an average share of 10.6%. Also, this Euroleague final was Sunday's most viewed program on all themed channels and became the most watched broadcast of the season for TVE. An average audience of 1.95 million viewers watched the game, which Olympiacos won 100-88. A total of 5.1 million viewers watched at least one minute of the game, and it became the ninth-most watched program in TDP history (EFE, 5/13).

Vodafone McLaren Mercedes "displayed its new Twitter handle, @McLarenF1," on the front wing endplate of the team's cars during the Spanish Grand Prix last weekend, according to Chloe Smith of CAMPAIGN LIVE. The new handle "was promoted on the cars driven by Jenson Button and Sergio Perez," and replaces the previous handle, @TheFifthDriver. The handle "has been created to make it easier for McLaren’s global fan base to identify and engage with the team on Twitter." The change is "in response to the team’s growing popularity on social media in the past 12 months." The number of followers on Vodafone McLaren Mercedes Facebook page "has increased by 40% to 700,000 in the past year." On Twitter, its following "has reached almost 350,000, a growth of 80%" (CAMPAIGN LIVE, 5/12).

IMG Media has signed a long-term deal with Alpari World Match Racing Tour to increase global viewing of the leading pro sailing series. IMG Media will distribute a series of highlights programs from each event, as well as a daily video news release (VNR) to all forms of media, including digital, throughout the series which begins with the first event in Langenargen, Germany beginning Wednesday. Sanctioned by the Int'l Sailing Federation, the series awards over $1.5M in prize money with points awarded at each event. The prize fund includes a $500,000 overall Tour Bonus for the top teams in the championship (Alpari World Match Racing Tour).

German pay-TV Sky channel "has extended its broadcast rights contract with the EPL." Sky "will continue to exclusively show the Premier League in Germany." The network "will continue to air an average of three games per match weekend." The contract extention "was in doubt as the Premier League does not generate a lot of interest or high ratings in Germany" (QUOTENMETER, 5/13). ... London's SUN newspaper will "introduce a paywall" from Aug. 1 with a £2 ($3) per week charge, which will include "access to Premier League football highlights" (GUARDIAN, 5/13).