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WORLD SNOOKER AND IMG EXTEND PARTNERSHIP WITH EUROSPORT

Jul 07, 2011 - Source: IMG Mediia

World Snooker, IMG Media - a division of IMG - and Eurosport are pleased to announce the extension of their long term partnership for an additional five seasons: 2011-2012 to 2015-2016.

The new agreement nearly doubles Eurosport's snooker offering, which increases from 10 to 19 tournaments per season. The sport's biggest tournaments, including the World Championship, will be shown to over 125 million homes in Europe.

Eurosport has acquired all exclusive TV and digital rights to broadcast LIVE the 19 tournaments on Eurosport and Eurosport 2 channels as well as on the Eurosport Player web TV service and mobile application. The deal covers all Eurosport's 59 countries (with some exceptions* in the UK).

Eurosport has broadcast snooker since 2003 and contributed to its growing popularity in Europe thanks to unrivalled exposure. Last season over 500 hours of snooker were broadcast on Eurosport, reaching 96 million different viewers, and these figures are set to increase.

During the coming 2011/12 season, Eurosport and Eurosport 2 will broadcast all world ranking events plus the Wuxi Classic, World Cup and Brazilian Masters and, for the first time, six of the Players Tour Championship events held in Europe.

World Snooker Chairman Barry Hearn said: "IMG has negotiated a fantastic deal for snooker and gives further momentum to the growth of the sport throughout Europe and beyond.

"We have established new events in the continent including the German Masters ranking event and the European PTC tournaments, and we're delighted that all of these will be screened by Eurosport. The spread of snooker in the region has been phenomenal in recent years and this is a key part of our continued efforts to make it a global sport.

"Revenues from our International broadcast agreements are becoming significantly more relevant for our business and the sport as a whole. Expanding these revenue streams will help us to create new events with more prize money for the players."

Adam Kelly, Senior Vice President & Marketing Director, IMG Media said: "IMG Media is pleased to have renewed the deal between World Snooker and Eurosport for this prestigious and emerging property. Over the last five years IMG has witnessed significant growth in snooker revenues and the continued partnership with Eurosport is testament to the growing popularity of the sport as it reaches broadening audiences across Europe."

Julien Bergeaud, Director of Programmes and Broadcasting, Eurosport Group said: "Snooker performs well in all European markets and achieves audience peaks equivalent to the greatest sporting events. For instance we drew 50 million different viewers for the 2011 World Snooker Championship. Our exclusive partnership with IMG Media and World Snooker confirms the status of Eurosport as the reference for Snooker in Europe."

* The deal does not feature coverage in the UK of the Masters, Welsh Open, UK Championship and World Championship and does not guarantee exclusive coverage in the UK of the World Open.

For more information, please visit www.eurosportcorporate.com