Public broadcaster Latvian Television (LTV) will continue to air the International Ice Hockey Federation’s (IIHF) flagship World Championship after securing a long-term rights agreement with Infront, the international sports marketing agency.
Infront holds exclusive media and marketing rights to all IIHF competitions in a 10-year deal running from 2024 to 2034, struck in 2019.
Under its renewal, LTV will retain rights in the country to show the annual World Championships from 2024 to 2028 after airing last year’s edition, which was co-hosted by Latvia and Finland.
This year’s World Championship, meanwhile, is due to run from May 10 to 26 in the cities of Prague and Ostrava, Czech Republic. Latvia’s first game will be played on May 11 against Poland.
The broadcaster will provide live coverage of all games, as well as pre-and-post game shows and behind-the-scenes footage.
Ivars Priede, chairman of the LTV board, said: “In its role as a public service broadcaster, Latvian Television is committed to delivering essential national events to the public through free broadcasting.
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“Ensuring that the public can follow the success of the Latvian national ice hockey team over the next five years and experience the pulse of global sport is of utmost importance.”
Last year, Polish terrestrial and satellite broadcaster Polsat secured exclusive rights to the next six editions of the IIHF World Championship between 2024 and 2029. That deal came after Poland’s national team qualified for this year’s competition for the first time in 22 years.
The tournament also secured free-to-air coverage in Germany with commercial broadcaster ProSiebenSat.1 through a sub-licensing deal with streaming platform DOSB New Media running from 2024 to 2028.
Germany, meanwhile, has won hosting rights to the 2027 edition of the World Championship – 10 years after staging the 2017 edition in France.
After the Czech Republic, the next two editions of the World Championship will be held in Sweden and Denmark (2025), and Switzerland (2026).