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Volume 10 No. 25


Every match at this year's Rugby League World Cup "will be shown live" on free-to-air TV under a deal with the Seven Network, according to Brad Walter of THE AGE. In a move that "will have a network other than Nine broadcast league for the first time in more than 20 years," the Rugby League Int'l Federation "has awarded the rights for the 14-nation tournament to Seven." It is the first time the World Cup rights "have been sold separately to the premiership, State of Origin and Test matches." Seven CEO Tim Worner said that the network "had also secured the online and mobile rights" (THE AGE, 6/24). In Sydney, Michael Bodey reported it is "another mischievous sports acquisition by Seven in which the network has slipped in under a sport's incumbent broadcaster and the latest example of free-to-air television's increasing desire to purchase sports to broadcast across multi-channels and all platforms." Seven will broadcast all matches from its 7mate channel and across online and mobile. Worner said that the Rugby League World Cup "is an extraordinary event and fits perfectly with our portfolio of major sports events that we can drive across our broadcast television platform and our emerging and developing online and mobile content platforms" (THE AUSTRALIAN, 6/24).

The facts of La Liga side Atlético Madrid's growth "demonstrate that the Internet is new territory," according to Chema G. Fuente of MUNDO DEPORTIVO. Atlético has become Spain's third team after Barcelona and Real Madrid. At the moment, the club has 1.3 million followers among the social media networks where it has a presence (Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Youtube, Tuenti and Instagram).  Facebook is the first social network where Atlético had a presence, and the club now has 497,758 Facebook friends. This season "has been especially successful on this platform. In the last eight months, Atlético has reached more than 200,000 new friends." Almost 2,000 fans per day have followed the club this year. The majority are Spanish, but "there is also a significant number of Colombian, Turkish, Mexican, Brazilian and Egyptian fans." Twitter "is one of Atlético's favorite territories." In two years, the club has gone from 20,553 to 416,000 Twitter followers, including the 189,000 that have followed it in the last eight months (MUNDO DEPORTIVO, 6/24).

Pan-European sports network Eurosport "has recorded convincing ratings for its broadcast of the Le Mans 24 Hours race," according to Alexander Krei of DWDL. An average of 80,000 viewers tuned in to watch the race. In the target demographic 14-49, Eurosport's broadcast had a 3.5% market share. At 9:27am on Sunday, Eurosport attracted a peak audience of 270,000 viewers, which translated into a 2.3% market share. In the target demographic, the race had a 2.5% share during that peak period. Less successful was Eurosport's broadcast of the U20 World Cup match between England and Iraq on Sunday evening. The game attracted 90,000 viewers and had a 0.1% market share in the target demographic (DWDL, 6/24).

FOOTBALL: DWDL's Krei also reported German free-to-air TV channel Sport1 "scored high ratings with two football broadcasts on Sunday." At 1pm, the channel showed the U19 Bundesliga final between Hansa Rostock and VfL Wolfsburg. A total of 460,000 viewers tuned in to watch Wolfsburg win the title. The number equaled a 3.6% market share. In the target demographic, the game obtained a 2.4% share. Starting at 8:55pm, Sport1 aired both Confederations Cup games. The simulcast of both games attracted 690,000 viewers. In the target demographic, the games obtained a 2.3% share (DWDL, 6/24).

German pay-TV network Sky Deutschland will change its price pattern for sports bar customers. In the future, a bar's square meters will not be the only deciding factor. Beginning on July 1, a location's population density, purchasing power and sports affinity will also be factored in. The price pattern will continue to be divided into six categories and adjusted based on a bar's square meters. There will be huge differences within each category. For example, a sports package in the first category (up to 35 square meters) has had a flat-rate price of €219 ($287), but with the new price patterns it can be anywhere from €119-€299 ($156-$392) depending where the bar is located. In the second category (up to 75 square meters), which includes 48% of the majority of Sky sport bar customers, the average price will be €274 ($359). While many customers will pay less with the new price pattern, bars in metropolitan areas will see a price increase (SPONSORs).

German TV network Sport1 "has acquired U.S. sports media rights for its own pay-TV channel Sport1+ from ESPN America, which will fold at the end of July," according to HOCKEY FANS. The U.S. sports media rights "are for the German-speaking region, Germany, Austria and Switzerland." If and how NHL broadcasts "are part of the deal is not clear as ESPN America's NHL rights were set to expire at the end of the season" (HOCKEY FANS, 6/24).

ManU's in-house pay-TV channel MUTV "has signed distribution deals in Norway, Iceland and Myanmar." The channel "has struck deals" with Norwegian commercial broadcaster TV2, Icelandic media group 365 and pay-TV broadcaster SkyNet in Myanmar. The agreements with SkyNet and TV2 "represent the first time MUTV programming will be broadcast to the club’s fans in Myanmar and Norway" (SOCCEREX, 6/24). ... Worldwide TV audiences for the Confederations Cup "continue to grow" despite the adverse publicity generated by the widespread protests in Brazil. In the second round of matches, markets in Japan, Spain, Germany and the U.K. -- the last two of which don't have a team in the competition -- "all witnessed increases in viewing figures" (INSIDE WORLD FOOTBALL, 6/24). ... German free-to-air TV channel Sat.1 Gold, which targets a female audience, "will launch a new magazine show on the weekend." Starting on Saturday at 8:05am, the channel "will air the new weekly magazine show 'Golftotal -- Das Magazin,' which provides domestic and int'l golf news, as well as the most beautiful golf courses in Germany and around the globe" (DWDL, 6/24). ... Pan-European sports network Eurosport "has extended its deal with the Automobile Club de l'Quest, operator of the Le Mans 24 Hours race, for another three years" until '16 (DWDL, 6/24).