TV coverage to reach 120 million homes
The Hong Kong Sixes is set to reach a record 120 million homes worldwide this weekend.
But what delights Hong Kong Cricket Association official Shahzada Saleem even more is that, for the first time, the television broadcast is in the hands of the local governing body.
'We control all aspects now and have taken on board experts who handle the production and distribution aspects. It is a huge step for us and it is fantastic that in our first year we will be reaching a record 120 million homes, which is almost 50 per cent more than last year,' said Saleem (pictured).
The HKCA has signed a three-year deal with BroadReach Media, whose managing director, Mark Denton, revealed that the main thrust of the live coverage this weekend would be to India and the rest of the subcontinent, where nearly 100 million homes will watch the action on ESPN Star Sports.
'Apart from India and the subcontinent, the Sixes will be shown live in the Middle East (OSN), New Zealand (Sky Sports), North America (Willow), Africa (Supersport) and of course in Hong Kong (Now Sports),' said Hong Kong-based Denton, formerly with Ten Sports.
While the HKCA might get a small financial reward in this first year, what is most beneficial is the wide exposure for title sponsor Karp, as well as all the other ancillary sponsors. 'There are 28 commercial spots on Indian television for the sponsors of the Sixes and they can reach out to a wide audience,' said Denton. 'In addition, Karp Group and a couple of other sponsors will have their brands shown most of the time.'
Saleem said this had been a useful selling point this year, and would be in the future. 'Our sponsors will be very happy with this sort of publicity on television. It will also help the Hong Kong brand, as we will be showcasing the city, too,' Saleem said.
For the first time, the Sixes is being backed by the government's Tourism Commission Mega Events Fund, which has given HK$3.5 million. Every cent will be worth it, say HKCA officials.