August 7 – Sports agency IMG is launching itself into the broadcast market in Scandinavia with its own OTT channel Strive, that will broadcast Spain’s LaLiga and Italy’s Serie A exclusively live.
The channel officially launches August 17 with the kick-off of LaLiga and will be available in Sweden, Norway and Denmark (strivesport.com) on computer, laptop, tablet and mobile, as well as via iOS and Android applications, including Chrome and Apple TV.
The channel puts down a challenge with an alternative OTT model to the US-based and driven broadcast disruptors Amazon, Netflix and Facebook who have all made tentative steps towards the big European league broadcast rights.
“This is an excellent opportunity for us to provide the very best content to a mature digital and well-established market. We look forward to building the brand Strive and giving our customers fantastic soccer experiences at a competitive price in the Scandinavian market,” said Chris Catling, president of IMG Media OTT services.
IMG said it is likely to add further football content beyond the Italian and Spanish leagues as rights become available and the channel develops.
The channel is 100% owned by IMG who have developed the platform infrastructure. IMG is SerieA’s worldwide broadcast rights distributor as well as holding international rights to a number of LaLiga markets.
Strive is launched with a seven-day free period, then for NOK 79 (£7.50) per month, or NOK 499 (£47) per year. IMG says it also plans to launch a 24-hour linear television channel. The channel is produced from IMG’s production headquarters in Stockley Park, London.
“This is a very exciting project for IMG and for all football fans in Scandinavia. These are two of the most popular leagues in the world, and Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and Juventus sneeze Cristiano Ronaldo are two of the world’s top players. Both leagues are very popular in the Nordic countries and have more players from Norway, Sweden and Denmark. Some of them appeared recently in the World Cup,” said Kristian Hysén, president of IMG Sweden.
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