NOW wins All Sports

Following its agreement earlier in the week to use Measat-3 for satellite distribution, new sports channel All Sports Network has gained carriage on Hong Kong’s NowTV IPTV platform.

ASN, which is being launched by Yes TV, itself once an aspiring IPTV operator in Europe and now based in Hong Kong, will broadcast 24 hours a day. Available immediately, the channel costs HK$80 a month.

Content includes mostly North American sports including the National Hockey League (NHL) and the National Football League (NFL), to which the broadcaster holds exclusive rights. Yes TV also operates the Goal TV pan-regional soccer network carried on platforms including Singapore’s StarHub, India’s Dish TV and Hong Kong’s TVB Pay Vision as well as PCCW’s Now TV.

Thomas Kressner, CEO of ASN, said: "ASN is also available in HD and the service is expected to be rolled out in Asia later this year."

Sports is a key battle ground in Hong Kong, and NOW TV has been keen to see its offerings enhanced given the fierce local competition from I-Cable. I-Cable has broadcast rights to the UEFA Champions League and the upcoming FIFA World Cup from South Africa in 2010.

China’s Xinhua Finance Media invested US$2 million in ASN last September, for a 16% stake. Xinhua is the channel’s exclusive distributor in mainland China on all platforms.