Reliance-owned Viacom18 has acquired broadcast and digital rights for the Italian Professional Football League, Lega Serie A for the Indian sub-continent territory for the next 3 seasons. The Serie A 2021-22 is scheduled to start on 21 August 2021 at 10:00 pm IST and end on 22 May 2022. The football fans will be able to watch the matches on Voot, Viacom18’s TV channels and Jio. It is going to be a treat for the football fans in India to witness football legends like Cristiano Ronaldo, Alexis Sanchez, Paulo Dybala, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and players from the winning team of Euro 2020 – Italy national football team in action.
Gourav Rakshit, Chief Operating Officer of Viacom18 Digital Ventures, said, “One of the core propositions of our network is the promise of variety in content. Sports is a whitespace that we have been consciously experimenting with for some time now. The response to our initiatives, thus far, has been very encouraging. Italian Serie A is one of the most exciting & competitive leagues in Europe and we are excited to bring it to our viewers across digital and broadcast platforms.”
Ferzad Palia, Head – SVOD and International Business, Viacom18 Digital Ventures said, “We are delighted to host the Italian Serie A across our network. The league enjoys great affinity with football lovers in India. Some of the world’s top clubs, coaches and players make the Serie A stand out as one of the best leagues in the football world. We are confident of growing the fan base through a slew of initiatives that are lined up.”
International Federation of Football History and Statistics (IFFHS) has voted Italian Serie A as the World’s Best Nation League in 2020. Founded in 1984, IFFHS documents the history and record of association football.
The Italian Serie A has appointed Infront, a Wanda Sports Group company to manage its international media rights for all formats covering regions, namely Asia, Europe, Oceania, Sub-Saharan Africa and Americas (excl. the USA). Also, Viacom18 has formed a partnership with Infront.
Amikam Kranz, Vice President Media Sales and Operations, Infront said: “This is the start of what we hope will be a positive relationship between Infront and Viacom18. Serie A already has a significant resonance with Indian football fans and this will help us further grow the audience in the country. We believe this is the beginning of what we hope will be a promising future.”
The Italian Serie A will have 20 teams participating, 17 teams from the previous season and three new teams promoted from Serie B. Benevento, Crotone and Parma were relegated to the Serie B 2021-22.
The Viacom18 Media Pvt. Ltd is an Indian joint venture operation between Network18 and ViacomCBS, based in Mumbai, Maharashtra. Network18 owns 51%, and ViacomCBS owns 49% stake. It is the country’s one of the largest growing media networks.