The key assets of the channels will be Eleven Sports recently acquired rights to Italy’s Serie A and the Spanish LaLiga. Indicating the increasingly fractured nature of UK sports rights, Eleven has acquired Live and Exclusive rights to Serie A previously held by BT Sport.
“The partnership with IMG strengthens Eleven Sports’ position as a major player in the UK and Ireland.” said Marc Watson, Executive Chairman and Group CEO, Eleven Sports. “IMG adds significant resources to our operations and they will contribute greatly to our innovative way of delivering more contemporary sports coverage that appeals to today’s audience.”
Eleven Sports 1 and Eleven Sports 2 will launch via an online streaming platform this August in the UK and Ireland.
“We are excited about this new partnership with Eleven Sports and the launch of the two new sports channels in the UK and Ireland. Eleven has shown, in a relatively short time, they are an innovative and creative company and we believe our vast experience and knowledge of the sports media rights business, alongside our production expertise will play an important part in making these two new channels a big success in the UK and Ireland.” said Adam Kelly, Senior Vice President, Worldwide Sales, IMG Media.
Founded by Mark McCormack, IMG has been owned by William Morris Endeavor and Silver Lake Partners since 2013. It has interests across a range of sports from football through to basketball, UFC and e-sports.