FISU targets youth audience with four-year Eurosport deal

The International University Sports Federation (FISU) has agreed a four-year rights deal with international sports broadcaster Eurosport.

The contract, running from 2020 to 2023, will include live and delayed television coverage of FISU sports events, starting with the Lucerne 2021 winter Universiade and continuing through the 2021 World University Games in Chengdu; Ekaterinburg (2023); and Lake Placid (2023).

The deal includes live and delayed television coverage of FISU sports events, along with digital advertising and activation, and editorial coverage of notable university sport news. The broadcast content will be shown on the linear channels Eurosport 1 and 2 in 54 European countries, and in the 12 Eurosport countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

FISU said that a significant portion of the audience that will be generated will be captured largely through event broadcasts and commercial spots, but that the agreement also has a “healthy media mix of event livestreaming and video on demand, digital news and media presence on the Eurosport’s digital channels for university sports”.

FISU secretary general Eric Saintrond remarked: “The kids no longer watch on TV, so we will be very present on the Eurosport Player, the Eurosport website and the Eurosport social media channels.”

In 2012, FISU and Eurosport announced a broadcast rights six-year agreement. That deal included the production of the Campus monthly programme. The multi-media tie-up also included the creation of a dedicated university sports section on Eurosport.com. However, air-time for programmes such as Campus came under pressure when Eurosport began to invest heavily in premium programming following its takeover by Discovery.

FISU announced a distribution agreement 12 months ago with Eurovision Services, an arm of the European Broadcasting Union. That deal covers all FISU events to 2021 and includes the distribution of an international signal to rights-holding broadcasters via the Eurovision Global Network.