Jam TV, the Australian production firm, has replaced international sports and entertainment giant IMG as the production partner of the country’s top-tier National Basketball League (NBL) for the next three years.
Under the agreement, Victoria-based Jam TV will produce live coverage of all NBL matches and shoulder programming including Overtime and The Crossover magazine shows.
While Jam TV replaces IMG as production partner, production and technology services firm NEP Group will remain the league’s broadcast facilities provider over the three-year contract.
Brad Joyner, NBL chief commercial officer, said: “We are extremely excited to be partnering with Jam TV for the production of our games and other shows and believe our fans will benefit greatly from an enhanced viewing experience and continued world-class broadcasting.
“Jam TV is a premier producer of television in Australia and has great expertise in sports broadcasting. This partnership is a big win for our fans and partners.”
Jam TV is owned by McGuire Media, the media production company led by Eddie McGuire, the former president of Australian Football league club Collingwood.
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It has previously produced live broadcasts for PGA Golf, the AFL Women’s league, the Victorian Football League, the South Australian National Football League, and the West Australian Football League, as well as documentaries for Amazon Prime, Stan, and Disney+.
Jam TV chief executive Cos Cardone said: “We’re incredibly excited about adding NBL to our growing slate of live sport and studio productions.
“It’s an exciting time for the sport, which is thriving off the back of the incredible efforts in recent years of the NBL and its associated clubs. We look forward to bringing the brilliant in-stadium experience to viewers across all platforms, and to showcase the stars and stories of this now world-renowned league.”
The deal comes as the league enjoys a boost in popularity across Australia, marked by domestic pay-television broadcast ESPN recording a 133% increase in average viewership for the 2022 NBL season compared with the 2021 edition.
ESPN has been the sole domestic pay-TV rights holder for NBL action since the 2019-20 season when it replaced fellow pay-TV operator Foxtel in a two-year rights deal covering 59 regular-season games each year, as well as all final matches. Last year, it renewed its agreement covering the 2021-22 to 2023-24 seasons.
Foxtel has a three-year carriage deal with ESPN covering the 2021-22 to 2023-24 seasons that allows customers to pick up games exclusive to ESPN through their subscriptions. As part of the deal, two fixtures per match day are streamed free-to-air by Foxtel’s Kayo Freebies streaming platform.
Last year, Australian commercial broadcaster Network Ten secured FTA rights to the NBL in a three-year deal that sees two games per week broadcast live on its 10 Peach channel and streaming service 10 Play. It replaced public broadcaster SBS, which held FTA rights from 2019.
Internationally, the 2022 NBL season brought new attention to the league through broadcast deals with Sky New Zealand; Dongquidi in China; Tap Sport in the Philippines; Fanseat in France, Denmark, and the UK; M Plus in Hong Kong and Macau; Astro in Malaysia and Brunei; and LIVENow in markets across Europe, the Americas, the Middle East, and the Indian subcontinent.
The 2022-23 NBL regular season tips off on October 1 and will end on February 5, 2023.