Goaaal! Now TV lands Hong Kong broadcast rights to Spain's La Liga for third time in a row

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 11 August, 2015, 5:07pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 12 August, 2015, 8:55am

Hong Kong telecommunications and media giant PCCW, operator of Now TV, has scored a neat hat trick after winning the exclusive rights to broadcast matches of the Spanish football league, Liga Nacional de Futbol Profesional (La Liga), for the next three seasons to May 2018.

This marks the third time that Now TV, the biggest pay-television service provider in Hong Kong, has been awarded the broadcast rights to one of the most popular professional sports leagues in the world.

Now TV will broadcast the La Liga matches in both high- and standard-definition formats. Viewers can also watch matches on their smartphones and media tablets via the Now Player app, and re-watch games through Now TV's video-on-demand service.

Financial terms of the broadcast rights and the total number of matches covered were not disclosed.

La Liga currently features some of the world’s top football players, including Barcelona striker Lionel Messi and Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo.

"The award of the La Liga broadcast rights represents our continued commitment to bringing the world’s best sports leagues to our customers," said Tham Loke Kheng, PCCW's executive vice-president for pay-television operations.

PCCW is widely expected to again bid for the broadcast rights of the top-rated Premier League. Its current deal with the English league will run out at the end of the current season in May next year.

Now TV had a total subscriber base of 1.292 million as of June 30, after adding 23,000 new customers in the first six months of this year.

Its monthly average revenue per user has rose three per cent in the first half to HK$196 (US$25.28), from HK$191 in the same period last year.

In March, PCCW launched a new ratings survey to examine the viewing habits across all platforms on which Now TV programming is shown.

The system developed by Kantar Media and CSM Media Research tracks viewing of TV content transmitted via set-top boxes, online and over-the-top platforms. Data is captured without the need to install any other equipment with the sample households.

The survey picks a sample of 2,000 households that mirror the demographics of the 1.292 million households which subscribe to Now TV services according to their estate type, where they live and the devices they use to project a viewership of individual household members.

Tham said the data would be translated into the currency widely adopted by advertisers, including TV rating point, target audience rating point, cost per rating point, and reach and frequency.