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WDSF returns to Lagardère Sports to distribute content in APAC region

The Lagardère Sports agency has been appointed to distribute media rights programming on behalf of the World DanceSport Federation (WDSF) in the Asia-Pacific region.

Announcing the agreement, the WDSF said that the agency will “help to sublicense and manage the distribution of certain WDSF media rights to third parties for broadcast in their respective territories, where broadcasters will be able to broadcast via free-to-air, pay-per-view, video-on-demand, and other modes of transmission”.

The programming will include the six-episode ‘2019 Best of Dance Sports’ series, showcasing six major tournaments held in five cities. Action from the 2019 WDSF World Breaking Championship in Nanjing features in one of the episodes.

A dozen episodes of the 2019 WDSF Grand Slam Series programme will also be distributed.

Lagardère Sports previously distributed the WDSF’s international media rights (between 2010 and 2016). The distribution was handled by Lagardère’s erstwhile IEC in Sports agency.

Lagardère Sports recently changed hands after the acquisition of a 75-per-cent stake by H.I.G. Europe, an arm of the international private equity and asset management firm, for €110m (€120.6m). A rebrand of the agency will soon follow suit.

Malcolm Thorpe, the agency’s managing director, South East Asia, said: “At a time when broadcasters are looking to fill a void in live programming, and with communities in the region always eager to consume world-class sports and entertainment content, we foresee DanceSport’s increasing appeal following its second inclusion at last year’s SEA Games in the Philippines and the provisional inclusion of Breaking at the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris.”

“Together with Breaking’s evergreen popularity among younger dancers and with Asian heavyweights Japan, China and South Korea making inroads, we are pleased to contribute to the wealth of aspirational content programming for the region’s dance enthusiasts.”

WDSF president Shawn Tay added: “As the global popularity of DanceSport disciplines continues to increase, the agreement will give our athletes a bigger platform to showcase their talent while satisfying the growing hunger for dance in the region at the same time.

“In addition, as an Olympic-affiliated organisation gearing up for Breaking’s potential debut at the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris, part of our mandate is to educate and inspire young people to lead healthy lifestyles and live by the Olympic values. Our deal with Lagardère Sports will greatly assist us in this mission.”