NBC Sports Group has formally acquired Universal Sports Network assets from World Championship Sports Network, including the rights to nearly all FIS World Cup events. (USSA)
PARK CITY, UT (Nov. 16, 2015) – Ski and snowboarding fans will have their greatest opportunity in history to watch competitive skiing and snowboarding this winter. NBCUniversal announced Monday that it has formally acquired Universal Sports Network assets from World Championship Sports Network, including the rights to nearly all International Ski Federation World Cup events. It is expected that NBC Sports will air the complete global schedule of the Audi FIS Ski World Cup alpine ski racing tour this winter, along with a significant calendar of World Cup cross country, ski jumping, nordic combined, freestyle and snowboarding.
NBC Sports Group will utilize NBCUniversal’s family of networks, including NBCSN and Universal HD, to televise events. NBC Sports Live Extra -- NBC Sports’ live streaming product for desktops, mobile devices, tablets, and connected TVs -- will live stream events, including some digital-only programming. Universal Sports Network has ceased operations.
One of the key channels for skiing and snowboarding will be Universal HD, a network that began in 2004 and presently carries replays of skiing events, as well as NBCSN, which is presently home to many U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association major domestic events. Universal HD is available on most cable and satellite systems and will bring ski and snowboarding events to much larger audiences than in the past.
The planned coverage across NBC Sports Group channels will be greater than ever before for skiing and snowboarding. It comes on the heels of efforts by the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association to raise the level of awareness in America through innovative broadcast and streaming packages of its own U.S. events with NBC over the past few years. That resulted in record ratings at last year’s Alpine World Championships in Vail/Beaver Creek and growth in coverage of snowboarding and freeskiing in the U.S. Grand Prix.
QUOTES Tiger Shaw, President and CEO, U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association As America’s Olympic network, NBC Sports Group is well positioned to bring our sports to even larger audiences. We’re thankful to World Championship Sports Network and Universal Sports for elevating the stature of our sports and welcome a new partnership with NBC to continue to bring ski racing to our fans and the American public.
Michael Jaquet, Chief Marketing Officer, U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association The global awareness of our stars combined with the pro-active work we have done to raise the profile of our sports in America have helped create much greater value for our content. NBC has been the best partner you can have and a big part of that growth. We now have an opportunity to bring exposure to our sports in America like never before and create a strong path to the Olympics in 2018 and beyond.
Gary Zenkel, President, NBC Olympics, a division of NBC Sports Group. Acquiring these valuable media rights builds on our long-term investment in the Olympic Games through 2032, and reaffirms our commitment to Olympic sports and the stories of the great athletes who compete in them. We now have a great opportunity to engage with the Olympic-sport audience year round and inspire the next generation of Olympic fans, which is a critical part of our ongoing Olympic strategy.