The International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and Twitch have announced this week that they have signed a multi-year collaborative deal with the aim of bringing more live basketball content onto the live streaming service.
In the first such deal with an international sporting federation, FIBA has agreed not only to live stream basketball matches but also to work with Twitch to tailor that content specifically for the streaming format.
The deal will see an initial 600 hours of live basketball streamed onto FIBA’s own Twitch TV channel. In addition, additional programs will be made to make full use of Twitch’s interactive tools and features.
Fans of basketball will be delighted to know that they will also be able to produce their own FIBA related content for their own Twitch channels as FIBA are one of the few rights-holding companies that allow access to original footage for Twitch account holders.
Network Of Creators
Part of the plan for the partnership is for FIBA to set up a trusted network of creators of content around the globe, focusing on its main markets, which include France, Spain, Australia, and the United States.
These partners will not only help in producing their own content but will also co-stream live games.
Speaking about the partnership, the FIBA Secretary General Andreas Zagklis commented:
“FIBA is delighted to announce this unique collaboration with Twitch, a live streaming service that is used by millions of people globally each day. This innovative agreement will further strengthen our strategic objective to enlarge the FIBA family by offering year-round basketball action to more fans, on an interactive service.”
Damian Burns, the Senior Vice President EMEA of Twitch remarked:
“Twitch is a community of superfans where the most passionate come together to participate and shape their own entertainment – live.”
“FIBA is an innovation-driven organisation and is passionate about bringing fans together in new interactive ways around live streaming. This makes FIBA the perfect fit for Twitch.”
Change Of Direction for Twitch?
Twitch has made its name and fortune predominantly as a streaming service for gamers and esports, but in recent times the service has become increasingly popular with other forms of entertainment, notably sporting teams and musicians.
However, the deal with FIBA is being viewed as a landmark agreement; is the first time Twitch has agreed a deal with an international federation.
There is also a growing feeling that as Twitch continues to grow, it will be through diversification into other non-gaming markets, such as sports live streaming, that the company can continue to reach new customers and new demographics.
Charlie Beall, the EMEA Sports Lead at Twitch summed up the companies view succinctly:
“Whilst Twitch is known for its heritage in gaming, we have seen this organic growth outside of gaming in the last few years, particularly in music and sport. Non-gaming content has quadrupled over the last three years. Twitch is a community which meets around passion points and clearly, that has tie-ins with particular sports.”
Busy Week For Twitch With Smart TV Tie Up
It has been a busy week for Twitch as they have also announced a new partnership this week with Vestel to bring their live streaming service direct to a new generation of Smart Televisions across Europe.
Customers of all Vestel-manufactured TV’s such as Hitachi, JVC, Techwood, and Telefunken will be able to directly access Twitch channels and live streams from a dedicated app from Spring 2021.
The Twitch app will be made available on all Vestel-manufactured TV’s made from June 2018 onwards, shortly.