Horse sport signs on to new Olympic Channel

The new Olympic Channel has more than 60 staff members.
The new Olympic Channel has more than 60 staff members.

Horse sport’s world governing body is among 27 international sports federations to collaborate on content for the Olympic Channel, which aims to bring sport to a massively increased television audience worldwide. 

The FEI signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Olympic Channel this week.

FEI President Ingmar de Vos said the collaboration was “a unique opportunity to open a global window on our sport”.

“Sport touches many cultures and people of all ages and, in our efforts to maintain a long-lasting positive impact worldwide, we are delighted to be part of this ground-breaking initiative value and to provide content to the Olympic Channel,” he said.

“By sharing our sport and our athletes’ stories on the Olympic Channel, we will be part of a new global network, together with our International Federation counterparts within the Olympic Movement, inspiring generations through the power of sport at its very best.”

The creation of an Olympic Channel was one of the key recommendations of Olympic Agenda 2020, aiming to provide a new way to engage young people and core fans in the Olympic Movement, while also promoting the Olympic values on a consistent basis.

IOC President Thomas Bach said the Olympic Channel would mark a major shift in how the Olympic Movement connects with young people all year-round.

“The International Federations have embraced the Olympic Channel and we look forward to working with them on the exciting programming and promotional opportunities,” Bach said.

“The newly formed Olympic Channel team is making steady progress, with the emphasis on ensuring the product is right and the quality of the programming matches our ambition. We look forward to announcing the 2016 launch date in the coming weeks.”

Olympic Channel Services General Manager Mark Parkman said preparations for the channel’s launch were on course. “Content production has begun, the technology and platforms are being tested, and there is a growing sense of energy and excitement here among the Olympic Channel team as we prepare for launch this year.”

IOC President Thomas Bach.
IOC President Thomas Bach. © IOC/C. Moratal

The Channel will broadcast live sports events, news and athlete stories, as well as historical Olympic footage and official films from the IOC’s archives. There will also be a focus on educational and youth-oriented programming, sustainability, sports science and nutrition, and promoting a healthy and active lifestyle.

The Olympic Channel collaborations aim to complement the International Federations’ current broadcast and distribution arrangements. The Olympic Channel team is currently working with the IFs to create innovative partnerships, including live event coverage, highlights, magazine shows, news coverage and original programming.

In addition to the FEI, OCS has concluded agreements with other international federations, including those representing badminton, basketball, bobsleigh & skeleton, boxing, canoeing, fencing, golf, gymnastics, hockey, ice hockey, judo, modern pentathlon, shooting, skiing, swimming, table tennis, tennis, triathlon, weightlifting, wrestling, archery, curling, rowing, rugby, sailing, and taekwondo.

The Olympic Channel Services team consists of more than 60 full time employees from 20 nationalities. The commercial and distribution departments are located at the IOC headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland, and the technical and production units operate out of Madrid, Spain. The facility to house the Olympic Channel in Madrid is now complete and the OCS production team has begun working with leading production companies from around the world.

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