The International Hockey Federation has announced a commercial partnership with Google owned internet giants YouTube to provide broadcast coverage of the upcoming Hockey World League Finals.
By engaging with YouTube, fans in countries without broadcast agreements will be able to access matches via a Pay Per View YouTube system. YouTube will work as a primary distribution platform in participating nations’ markets where digital consumption has proven to be the primary method for consuming sport, and as a secondary platform giving fans access to matches not being shown by their local broadcaster, FIH stated in a Press release.
This unique partnership will give access to billions of sports fans looking to tune in to all the action from the Sentinel Homes Women’s Hockey World League Final in Auckland (17-26 November) and the Odisha Men’s Hockey World League Final in Bhubaneswar (1-10 December) 2018. The YouTube agreement will supplement coverage being provided to over 150 countries through existing broadcast partners.
In cooperation with FIH Official Media Partner Star Sports, FIH has been working hard to provide greater visibility of hockey through broadcasters, with digital platforms key to reaching new markets. This strategy is fundamental to achieving the main aim of FIH’s Hockey Revolution strategy – to make hockey a global game that inspires the next generation.
Speaking about these developments, FIH TV and Broadcast Director, Andy Oram, said: “We are delighted to engage with the biggest provider of online video content who are actively engaged and committed to growing the game. YouTube is a valuable addition to our existing partners and provides FIH with the opportunity to reach a global audience, attracting a new generation of fans to the sport through a wide range of devices that hockey can now be viewed on.
“Through our host broadcasters Sky Sport New Zealand and Star Sports, supported by our growing list of broadcast partners, fans can expect to experience world-class production and programming that they have come to expect from our top-level events. This will bring fans closer to the action as we aim to engage them in our sport long term.”
YouTube’s Head of Sport for Europe, Middle-East and Asia, Tomos Grace, added: “YouTube provides a flexible platform for content owners to reach sports fans worldwide. We’re very happy to see innovative partners like the FIH make full use of this flexibility by combining YouTube’s free-to-air and PPV live functionality in their key target markets.”