The deal between Star India and International Hockey Federation is for eight years from January 2015 to December 2022. Photo: PTI
Star India, which broadcasts the Star Sports channel, on Tuesday said it has entered into a strategic partnership with the International Hockey Federation (FIH) to produce, broadcast and distribute the sports body’s international and Indian events.
The deal is for eight years from January 2015 to December 2022.
The company said it will invest heavily to improve the production of international hockey broadcast and extend hockey’s reach worldwide. FIH, the world governing body for hockey, will host one major hockey event in India each year of the deal period, it said.
“Hockey is a priority sport for us and we are thrilled that India will host one key event every year during the eight year term. We believe that hosting an international event each year, which is produced innovatively, will significantly boost the popularity of hockey in India,” said Nitin Kukreja, head of sports business, Star India.
Broadcast rights for FIH events are currently held by Ten Sports.
As part of the deal, Star Sports has acquired global media rights for all territories, excluding Argentina. Through its network of international affiliates and other national broadcasters, content will be distributed to more than 200 countries, the company said.
Star India has been placing its bets on developing sports. It has made commitments to the tune of Rs.20,000 crore in sport and is looking to invest an additional $2 billion over the next 5 years.
Last year, Star Sports partnered with Hockey India to launch Hockey India League (HIL). In its first season, HIL was broadcast in more than 80 territories globally.
“For the first season of the Hockey League we had 41 million viewers tuning in. We see that the numbers are growing. Star India has already committedRs.100 crore towards season 2 of the Hockey League, which kicks off five days from now,” said Kukreja.
“Not only will Star Sports promote hockey worldwide between Olympic Games’ cycles, which is incredibly important to sustaining interest in hockey, but it will make our sport much more interactive and entertaining,” said Leandro Negre, president of the International Hockey Federation.