Liberty Global and ESPN Reach Agreements for Channel Carriage in Germany, Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland
- ESPN America HD Launches in Netherlands
- ESPN America, ESPN Classic and Video-On Demand Services Included in Deals
Liberty Global’s European cable operations in Germany (Unitymedia and Kabel BW), Netherlands (UPC), Austria (UPC) and Switzerland (upc cablecom) have reached agreements with ESPN for carriage of sports channels. With a combination of renewals and new launches, ESPN America HD, ESPN America and ESPN Classic will be available to hundreds of thousands of European households that get their television service from UPC companies.
In the Netherlands, ESPN and UPC Netherlands have renewed their existing ESPN America agreement and are launching ESPN America HD.In central Europe, Unitymedia and Kabel BW (Germany), UPC Austria and upc cablecom (Switzerland) have each renewed agreements to deliver ESPN America and ESPN Classic to viewers. Upc cablecom also carries ESPN America HD.
The agreements also will allow ESPN and the individual Liberty Global platforms to collaborate around video-on-demand content for current or future VOD services. ESPN will also work with the local-market teams on collaborative marketing,
Murray Barnett, vice president, sports channels and syndication, ESPN EMEA, said “For years we have had a great and growing relationship with Liberty Global Europe’s platforms, and this agreement is an extension of the collaboration and mutual growth. We’re thrilled to continue the rollout of amazing HD sports to more homes across Europe, and to work collaboratively with Liberty Global companies and platforms to serve or explore video-on-demand services.”
LIBERTY GLOBAL EUROPE
Liberty Global Europe provides video, broadband internet, and voice services in 11 European countries under the brands UPC, Unitymedia and Kabel BW (Germany), and Telenet (Belgium), and digital programming & services through Chellomedia, a world class multimedia content provider. Liberty Global’s European headquarters in Amsterdam is home to its technological development, network management, and product development teams. It is also the location of Liberty Global’s European distribution center, Chello DMC (Digital Media Centre). Chello DMC is the source of digital television for millions of households in Europe, in and outside of Liberty Global’s footprint.
In each of Liberty Global’s European markets, local affiliate operations benefit from the company’s global scale and centralized technology procurement, combined with its commitment to locally managed culture and content environments.
ESPN AMERICA / ESPN AMERICA HD
ESPN America HD leverage’s the sport’s media company’s position as both a global technology leader and as the leading player in American sport, ESPN America features more than 80 percent of its programming in true, native HD – the highest percentage of any pan-regional sports channel in Europe. It televises the very best of American sports, direct form the US, as well as bringing viewers ESPN’s award-winning original news and information shows. Highlights of programming on ESPN America HD include*:
- NFL: fans of American football get up to six live games each week during the regular season, all in HD. The schedule includes games on Sunday (including Sunday Night Football) and ESPN’s signature programme, Monday Night Football, among the longest running and most-celebrated sports events on television. ESPN recently announced an extension to its international television rights for the NFL that runs through 2021.
- MLB: baseball fans can see more than 260 regular season MLB games per season, the MLB All-Star Game, plus the MLB playoffs and the World Series, all on ESPN America.
- NHL: Ice hockey fans can see more than 100 NHL games throughout the season on ESPN America, with the top hockey players from around the world facing off against each other nightly.
- NCAA College Basketball and American Football: ESPN America delivers hundreds of live college basketball and American football games, including live coverage of March Madness® – the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship Tournament and the BCS Championship Bowl games, which decides the College Football National Champion each January.
- X Games: ESPN America brings complete live coverage of the X Games Los Angeles, Winter X Games Aspen and Winter X Games Tignes to viewers. X Games features the planet’s top action sports athletes competing in the greatest action sports competitions. As part of its expansion to six annual events around the world, X Games has named nine cities as finalists to host and X Games event from 2013 to 2015. Among them are Munich, Barcelona and Lisbon.
- Award-winning Original Programmes: ESPN America also brings sport fans the acclaimed news, highlights and analysis shows from the US, including ESPN’s signature, world-renowned SportsCenter, Sunday NFL Countdown, ESPN NFL Primetime, ESPN Monday Night Countdown, NFL Live, NBA Tonight and Baseball Tonight.
ESPN has reached more than a dozen new distribution deals with platform partners in Europe for distribution of HD networks, led by ESPN America HD, bringing crystal clear HD sports to millions of homes.
Since 2002, ESPN Classic has brought fans sport’s greatest moments, memories and legends from the world’s most famous and iconic events. Bringing context and perspective to the contemporary sporting landscape, ESPN Classic offers viewers a unique insight to the heritage of sport. With a new look and feel introduced a year ago in March 2011, ESPN Classic has continued to evolve and deliver fans an extensive line up of archival programming and award-winning documentaries which has complemented fans enjoyment of some of the world’s major sporting events, such as the Olympics, FIFA World Cup, UEFA European Championships, boxing’s greatest fights and fighters, Formula 1, Tour de France, Six Nations Rugby and Rugby World Cup, international cricket, Moto GP, the Barclays Premier League and more.