ESPN International and NBA Extend Global Partnership With Multi-Year Television Rights Renewal Agreement
NEW YORK, January 10, 2005 - ESPN International and the National Basketball Association have reached a television rights agreement on a multi-year renewal, continuing to build upon a relationship dating back to 1990.
The agreement calls for ESPN International to televise up to 52 live NBA games per season, including regular season and playoff action, to Latin America and the Caribbean, the Middle East, Africa, and the Pacific Rim.
In addition to NBA games, the agreement also provides for ESPN International to televise up to 19 WNBA match-ups, as well as supporting programs such as NBA Action, WNBA Action and ESPN’s NBA Shootaround.
“ESPN and the NBA are two of the world’s great sport brands, and I am delighted we will continue our international relationship for a 15th consecutive season and beyond,” said Russell Wolff, Managing Director, ESPN International. “I am pleased that ESPN International can play a part in bringing NBA programming to fans all over the world, while helping to grow both of our global brands.”
“Over the years, ESPN International and the NBA have grown significantly and so has the value of our partnership,” said Scott Levy, NBA Senior Vice President, International Television and Marketing Partnerships. “Our agreement is representative of the global demand for our games and programming as we continue to bring the NBA to fans around the world.”
“With this agreement, ESPN remains the leader in providing the most compelling American and international sports leagues and events to our viewers around the world,” said Tim Bunnell, vice president of programming and marketing, ESPN International. “The NBA has always been a key ingredient of our programming success, and we are thrilled to continue our relationship into the future.”
About ESPN International
ESPN International is a division of ESPN, Inc., “The Worldwide Leader in Sports.” ESPN International has evolved to include ownership, in whole or in part, of 30 television networks, as well as a variety of ancillary businesses, which together extend the ESPN brand to more than 190 countries and territories. ESPN International network programming is transmitted in 12 languages (Arabic, Cantonese, English, French, German, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, Portuguese and Spanish). ESPN International business entities include television, radio, print, internet, wireless, consumer products, and event management.
About the NBA
Since its founding in 1946, the NBA has truly become a global phenomenon that transcends national boundaries. With 30 teams in the United States and Canada, NBA games and related programming are broadcast to 214 countries in 43 languages via 157 telecasters; they are one of the largest suppliers of sports television and Internet programming in the world. NBA.com, with more than half of all visits to the site coming from fans outside the United States, has nine language-specific international destinations for fans around the world. The NBA is a recognized leader in global sports marketing with 13 offices around the world. From June to November 2004, the NBA conducted 36 events with 30 partners on six continents. The league opened the 2004-05 season with 81 international players from 35 different countries and territories.