Sky Sports Italy’s Giovanni Bruno on technological changes and landmark projects: part two

In the second of a two-part interview, SVG Europe speaks to Giovanni Bruno, director of special initiatives at Sky Sports Italy, about the broadcaster’s plans for the remainder of 2014 and the challenges of delivering sports coverage that is consistently fresh and innovative.

Please tell us about some of your specific plans for the rest of this year…

When it comes to Formula 1 and Moto GP the technical development is two-fold.

It is not just concerning the TV signal and the programme aired, but also a more general way to follow the whole discipline. Techniques developed in these areas can be transferred to other areas.

Essentially, the main idea is to continue to cover sports with freshness and completeness, which have always been hallmarks of Sky. The goal is to reduce normal ‘television time’ and expand the ‘event time’. For example, we like to consider the half-hour or even hour before a game as part of the event itself.

The story must begin at that precise time and accompany the viewer until after the match or race, giving him or her the same emotions we feel [on the ground].

In this sense, the technical development which we expect more of in 2014 is the interaction between TV and social networking that further develops the story of a sporting event.

And of course, 2014 is hardly lacking in major sporting events…

Indeed! We have the World Cup coming up, but before that the Winter Games gave us an important opportunity to convey the tremendous breadth of [snow and ice-based sports]. We devoted five TV channels to Sochi so as not to miss a race.

Our on-screen mosaic – the third in a row after those proposed for Vancouver and London – was like an open window on the Olympic Park through which everyone could choose to follow events with the same and even greater freedom than the viewer on the ground. What’s more, the shooting of the races, both indoors and outdoors, underlined what is for us already an established [belief]: that to see a game in HD is really like following it from a few centimetres away.

Finally, can you sum up Sky Italia’s portfolio of events for 2014 in a few words?

The Sochi 2014 Olympics has enriched the offer of Sky Sports. From the Italian (Serie A and Serie B) and international soccer (with the Bundesliga championship), to the European Champions League and then the World Cup (all 64 matches live, of which 39 are exclusive) – there is certainly no shortage of football coverage! And then there is the big news of the World Championship Motomondiale in 2014 and the return of the Formula 1 World Championship. In additionm we have the NBA basketball, tennis (Wimbledon), golf (with European and American circuits and the Ryder Cup), rugby, boxing (the World Series) and other motor racing. Also, we have on Fox Sports 2 HD (exclusive on Sky) Euroleague Basketball, Volleyball Champions League and the NFL (with the Super Bowl). So yes, in short, 2014 is a truly great year for sports.


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