Tennis channel and WTA inked five-year TV/OTT rights deal UAE, Doha, Qatar

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Tennis Channel and the WTA have inked a five-year agreement that will make the WTA available live on Tennis Channel live, over-the-top (OTT) streaming platforms as from January 2019. The collaboration includes Premier and International competitions as well as the WTA Finals—representing more than 2,000 matches each season.

The agreement allows Tennis Channel live, over-the-top (OTT) streaming rights to these competitions as well as authenticated digital streams. Tennis fans will be able to subscribe directly to the network’s tennis channel streaming service for more WTA matches that are not accessible on television and offers television subscribers to watch Tennis Channel with them on the go via mobile and out-of-home devices.

The WTA and its media-rights partner DAZN Group (formerly Perform Group) collaborated with current worldwide rightsholder beIN Sport to facilitate January’s U.S.-rights handoff to Tennis Channel.  As one of the WTA’s largest rightsholders, beIN Sport who is one of the WTA’s rightsholders that will keep on offering these events outside of the United States, as it maximizes the WTA brand on a worldwide scale.  WTA Premier events that will be in Tennis Channel’s on-air or digital lineup in 2019 will also include Doha in Qatar and Dubai in United Arab Emirates.

The President of Tennis Channel, Ken Solomon, declared, “Everyone involved—the WTA, beIN Sport, DAZN Group, Tennis Channel—came together for this partnership, with the result a big victory for American tennis fans. We couldn’t be more thrilled to tell the year-round story of the athletes and other off-court personalities who make the WTA the preeminent brand in women’s sports.  The women’s game is the biggest differentiator between tennis and every other sport, and one of the most powerful elements in helping grow mass viewership online.  As we continue to aggressively grow our closely integrated television and streaming subscriber bases—along with online, social media and print—we’re looking forward to forging new ground with the WTA in creating new, expanded demand and broad, nationwide awareness and excitement for the sport we love and represent.”

On the other hand, Micky Lawler, WTA President, expressed, “The WTA is pleased to partner with Tennis Channel in showcasing women’s tennis and its world class athletes to our dedicated and passionate US fans. We look forward to growing the WTA with the Tennis Channel across US households through unified broadcast, streaming and media platforms. The WTA continues to work hand in hand with beIN Sport as they are a valued partner and fantastic stewards of the sport, serving as one of our largest rightsholders across the globe.”

Tennis Channel intends to air more than 20 matches at the competition, from the first day of play through the finals.