The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) is delighted to announce the beginning of an exciting new era for the broadcasting of athletics, following an agreement reached with ITN Productions to form a joint venture company (JV) for Host Broadcasting and Media Production.
As the IAAF calendar develops in the coming years, the production partnership will gradually assume responsibility for all IAAF content requirements. The company will incorporate traditional and digital production and 24/7 storytelling to cover the activities of the whole athletics family in addition to the competitive events.
The IAAF launched a public tender process on 10 May 2017 with the intent of taking greater control of the way its leading global events are presented by establishing a Joint Venture company to ensure the highest quality broadcast of its top competitions. The aim is to develop production capabilities that will be used by local organising committees around the world to ensure consistent high level broadcasts and production standards. The Joint Venture company will initially deliver host broadcasting of IAAF World Athletics Series and IAAF World Indoor Tour events plus all the IAAF’s non-live production requirements including magazine and feature programming, digital and branded content, with a focus on innovation and an eye towards the future. The JV company will work with partners across the athletics family including rights holders, event organisers, sponsors and athletes to ensure quality and consistency of production across the sport.
Pending completion of agreements and final approval from the parties' respective governing bodies, the company is expected to commence operations in January 2018.
IAAF CEO Olivier Gers commented: “This is a great sport with outstanding athletes and stories and I was delighted by the amount of interest we received to our Request for Information (RFI) when it opened in May. We have some exciting new ideas and were looking for a partner who shares our vision and is also prepared to think outside the box and bring the excitement, fun and spectacle of the sport to our fans all over the world. We look forward to starting this new venture and liaising with our Member Federations and local organising committees, strengthening the relationship between our competitions and our fans.
Mark Browning, Group MD, ITN Productions, said: “ITN Productions is one of a very few production companies that can combine live and outside broadcast production with editorial expertise, on a global scale. This is a true partnership and we share the ambition and vision of the IAAF to excite existing fans and entice new ones through creative flair and technical innovation.”
ITN Productions was Host Broadcaster for the 2017 IAAF World Relays in April, providing live broadcast, digital and social media coverage.