Neo Sports in its efforts to further stress on being ‘the home of Indian cricket on TV’ has announced its calendar of international cricketing properties lined up till March 2010. The channel has claimed that 72 per cent of all confirmed international cricketing events and series featuring India till March 2010 would be telecast on Neo Sports.
Shashi Kalathil, CEO, Neo Sports Broadcast Pvt Ltd, said, “The excitement is beginning to build with major international cricket series in India coming up live and exclusive on Neo Sports, starting January 2007. This will top up the domestic season, which has already commenced, and we are now uniquely positioned to provide our viewers with a single destination point for their cricketing requirements.”
Kalathil further said, “While we have the lion’s share of what works best today, our focus will be to make the viewership of the game more multi-dimensional. This will be crucial to building the popularity of domestic cricket and a robust cricket viewing culture.”
The channel is looking at redefining the existing paradigm of viewer involvement with cricket, where there is currently no life beyond ‘Live India cricket’. The first stage in this process is to re-energise domestic cricket. Building on its success of becoming the No. 1 sports channel with the Challenger series, Neo Sports is in sync with BCCI’s efforts in this direction, and is in the process of making domestic cricket ‘the next big thing’ with the repackaging and re-branding of the same. The second stage will be to drive appointment viewing beyond live cricket by combining key insights on television viewing and viewership data with those relevant to cricket.
Some of the initiatives in this direction, keeping in mind various consumer types and their nascent interests around cricket, include international quality coverage of domestic cricket, multi-lingual feeds for international and domestic matches, new technologies and methods of analysis, sports entertainment concepts around cricket, differentiated product offering for DTH, cable and the Internet.
Neo Sports has entered into an exclusive distribution tie-up with STAR India, which will ensure speedy connectivity build up for the channel. The channel will be available on cable, DTH and new media platforms and will have 100 per cent connectivity with the commencement of the ODI series with West Indies in January 2007.