Modern Times Group MTG AB (publ.) (‘MTG’ or ‘the Group’), the international entertainment broadcasting group, today announced that MTG’s Viasat Broadcasting has acquired the broadcasting rights to the 2014 Olympic Winter Games and the 2016 Olympic Games for the Baltics. MTG will have ‘first pick’ for each Baltic country to show one discipline from each of Sochi 2014 and Rio 2016 exclusively on its commercial free-TV channels in each of the Baltic countries. Viasat Broadcasting has also secured the exclusive pay-TV, pay-per-view and online rights to all events from both Games in all three Baltic countries. The rights have been acquired from international sports marketing agency SPORTFIVE International.
The 2014 Olympic Winter Games will take place in Sochi (Southern Russia on the Black Sea) between 7 and 23 February at newly constructed facilities. The 2016 Olympic Games will be held in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) between 5 and 21 August in four separate locations in the city, including well-known venues such as Copacabana and Maracana.
MTG will choose one popular discipline per Baltic country from each Olympic Games to broadcast exclusively on its family of free-TV channels in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. MTG’s free-TV channels have a combined pan-Baltic commercial share of viewing amongst 15-49 year olds of over 40%.
MTG will also broadcast all events from both Games live on its thematic sports pay-TV channels in the Baltics, with local language commentary and related highlights featuring current and archive footage. MTG not only has multiple Viasat sports pay-TV channels, which are available on its own Viasat satellite pay-TV platform and third party networks, but also Viasat Extra channels, which are available exclusively to Viasat’s satellite pay-TV customers and enable the simultaneous live broadcast of additional events.
Hans-Holger Albrecht, President and CEO of MTG, commented: “The Olympics are quite simply the most popular and most celebrated events in world sport, attracting huge audiences around the world. This is therefore a major step for us and follows our acquisition of the exclusive Swedish broadcasting rights to the 2014 and 2016 Games last year. Our range of channels and services across multiple distribution platforms will ensure that the Games get more coverage than ever before in the Baltics - this is the first time in Olympic history that viewers will be able to see live TV coverage of all events on a pay-TV platform.”