The multi-year partnership will see Viacom18 live-broadcast NBA matches and programmes.
The National Basketball Association (NBA) has signed a multi-year partnership with Indian private broadcasting group Viacom18, which will see the Indian media conglomerate live-broadcast NBA games and programmes across its television and over-the-top streaming platforms.
Viacom18 will broadcast live NBA games in English and Hindi through channels VH1, MTV, Voot and Jio TV. Coverage will include not only live games but also the NBA All-Star game, the NBA Play-In Tournament, and the NBA Playoffs and the Finals, while Viacom18 will also create original NBA-themed programming that is set to air across its channels.
Speaking about the partnership, Anil Jayaraj, CEO – Sports, Viacom18, stated:
“While sports are the biggest whitespace that we are entering, to build a truly inclusive and differentiated proposition, we need to look at diverse sporting events from across the globe.
“Basketball is a sport that is increasingly gaining attention and affinity in India. Through this partnership with the NBA, not only do we want to make basketball mainstream, but also build its lifestyle appeal among sports fans.”
Anshul Ailawadi, Head of Youth, Music and English Entertainment for Viacom18, added:
“Globally, basketball is more than a sport – it is a lifestyle.
“As we look to build basketball into a cultural phenomenon in India, we welcome this deep partnership with the NBA. Over the course of this association, we will be initiating a heavily localized marketing outreach and consumer connect programme aimed at building fandom for the sport.”
Sunny Malik, Head of Global Content and Media Distribution, NBA India, stated:
“We are thrilled to partner with Viacom18 to broadcast and stream live NBA games to a nationwide audience.
“Basketball’s popularity in India continues to grow, and by offering a range of NBA programming on Viacom18 in both English and Hindi, we look forward to reaching and inspiring millions of new and existing NBA fans across the country.”
Earlier in the year, Bollywood star Ranveer Singh was roped in as an Indian NBA brand ambassador, who now works towards growing the game in the country, especially during the NBA’s 75th anniversary, while also collaborating on the newly-launched NBA Style — a lifestyle-focused Instagram account for Indian fans that highlights the coming-together of the NBA and pop culture.