WTA Deal for Perform Group

Four year deal awarded to sports content distributor

An announcement came this week that the Women's Tennis Association has awarded a four-year deal to sports content distributor Perform Group to manage and oversee the development of all media rights.

The deal enters into force at the beginning of 2013 and expires at the end of 2016. It excludes the US and Canada, but includes the 22 Premier WTA events, such as the season-ending finale competition, the TEB BNP Paribas WTA Championships, currently held in Istanbul.

In terms of all broadcast relationships, Perform will partner with IEC in Sports to cover their sale, management and distribution.

According to a Perform spokesman, the company's plans involve increasing both the number of courts and days covered, thus doubling the number of currently delivered live matches. He also specified that the company intends to engage its digital platforms to cover the WTA Tour, and that the platforms will include TennisTV website, the WTA's and ATP World Tour's official live streaming subscription website, ePlayer, and Watch&Bet.

In regard to the deal, Stacey Allaster, president and CEO of the WTA, said "By partnering with a digital specialist in Perform, we will be able to merge technology across digital and broadcast, ensuring maximum worldwide exploitation of our Premier events on multiple platforms. WTA content will be delivered to our fans, commercial partners and members in a more compelling and efficient manner than ever before."

"The WTA is a fantastic sports right property. There are very few sports rights that can match it for quality, volume and frequency, especially on weekdays,' stated Simon Denyer, co-CEO of Perform. 'This new agreement underpins our tennis output until 2016 and allows us to implement a comprehensive digital strategy, creating a significant opportunity to launch new subscription products.

"We have a very longstanding commercial partnership with IEC in Sports in tennis dating back to 2005 that has been extremely successful for both parties. We look forward to extending our relationship with IEC in Sports," he concluded.

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