Platini flicks the 'on' switch at the IBC
UEFA President Michel Platini has opened the International Broadcast Centre in Vienna – the nerve centre of broadcasting for UEFA EURO 2008™.
Video feeds switched on
At a ceremony attended by Austria's federal chancellor Alfred Gusenbauer, Vienna's mayor Michael Häupl and the President of the Austrian Football Federation (ÖFB), Friedrich Stickler, Mr Platini switched on the TV video feeds from all the Austrian and Swiss venues in the IBC Master Control Room with a symbolic push of the button. For the first time in EURO history, UEFA will produce the television signal for the tournament itself through UEFA Media Technologies SA, the 100 per cent owned UEFA subsidiary which is in charge of the Host Broadcast Operations.
"Firstly, I would like to thank the Austrian authorities who have allowed us to set up this fantastic International Broadcast Centre here in the best possible conditions," said Mr Platini. "Today there is a strong link between football and television. The broadcasters are core partners of UEFA because of their key role in bringing the exciting images of our competitions to hundreds of millions of football fans all over the world. And it is because of this key role that television plays in the game that we, as UEFA, decided to act as the Host Broadcaster for a EURO for the very first time.
"By being able to control the content, the quality and by bringing in new innovations, we can be sure of offering the football fans worldwide the very best of UEFA EURO 2008™," the UEFA President concluded. "All the emotion and the actions at all venues arrive here before going to the world. It is a fantastic project for a wonderful competition."
"In Austria, and especially in Vienna, we are very much looking forward to a great EURO," added Mr Gusenbauer. "We've had excellent co-operation with our friends from Switzerland so far. The great hour is almost upon us. We're glad that so many journalists are coming to this event and we're happy to present the best working conditions ever. We hope this will allow you to send the best pictures of this permanent football party. We expect a great, great competition with good entertainment and good news."