New Serie A TIM TV channel delivers extensive Italian football coverage
Every week the new Italian TV channel from Lega Calcio, Serie A TIM TV, delivers three football matches across Saturday and Sunday schedules. Operating on a pay-basis for individual or all events, the channel presents each event with pre-and post-match studio material. The Italian sponsor of the channel is telco mobile operator TIM (Telecom Italia Mobile).
By common agreement, the channel constitutes a ‘new giant’ in the pay TV subscription landscape. Italian Serie A Lega Calcio is counting on the technical excellence of Italian production facility Infront, with both production and advertising being overseen by this well-known company.
General Manager of Lega Calcio Serie A, Marco Brunelli, explains: “This new offer does not want to compete [with existing services but instead deliver] an alternative; an opportunity to get close to a new audience and [so] we’ll address ourselves to ‘traditional television’ only in the future.”
The three matches of the top-level championship are streamed on the internet, IPTV and mobile, while the two other Italian pay-tv giants, Mediaset Premium and Sky, strive for “sports survival” in a competitive period. Meanwhile, Lega Calcio is using soccer as the ‘killer application’ to strike a chord with new subscribers.
The target audience is huge and the production team at Infront is extensive and very powerful. The idea behind this is rather simple: why sell others golden and profitable sports rights, just for a share, when external companies may be enlisted to handle all the difficult tasks for you? So Lega Calcio has tapped into an increasing trend for sports federations, which is to create a proper dedicated channel leaning on external production companies. In this case it is the same external company which is used to produce the same TV programs for other TV providers!
On an annual basis, Lega Calcio and Serie A TIM TV have 114 football matches to broadcast. The other participants in the coverage, as mentioned above, are Infront on production duties and sponsor Telecom Italia (TIM). The telco operator is essential for the distribution of content on the net and mobile devices to be connected to TV sets. Sport09, a subsidiary of Infront, deals with advertising collection.
One of the aims of this new channel is to involve young people in OTT pay TV. These days it’s not a simple question of traditional satellite or DTV channels, but addressing a new public which hardly spends time in front of a TV set – the so-called ‘Z Generation’. Hence the new channel’s futuristic feel, incorporating multi-media services, online statistics, social media interaction and much more.