Euroleague Basketball hosted a symposium for television rights-holders at the Final Four in Prague on Saturday to cap the first season in which the league has managed its own audio-visual rights. The symposium, held Saturday morning at Sazka Arena, featured nearly 30 participants, including representatives from television stations such as Canal Plus France, Sky Turk, Sky Italy and Canal Plus Poland, Euroleague clubs such as Olympiacos Piraeus and Cibona Zagreb, and national leagues such as those of Italy and France. One of the purposes of the symposium was to present the draft of a new Euroleague broadcasting manual. Broadcasters and other participants will have their comments and suggestions taken into account for a final version of the manual, which will be offered for approval to the Euroleague Assembly in June.
The symposium was another step taken by Euroleague Basketball in the first year that it has begun to manage media and commercial rights in-house, maintaining direct relationships with broadcasters since last September. After months of signing new broadcasting agreements, while renewing and strengthening others, Euroleague Basketball invited its broadcasting partners to the symposium to help further improve the televised product for fans.
For the first time, Euroleague Basketball is co-producing the Final Four itself with local TV, taking advantage of Prague being a neutral site and working with Czech TV to broadcast the games in 120 countries. Under the expertise of Sky Italy's Flavio Tranquilo in the role of producer, the Prague effort sets a standard for how things will be run in the future.
The featured guest at the seminar was Ed Desser, former NBA Director of Broadcasting for 23 years, who launched NBA TV and managed the league's international broadcast expansion. Desser spoke on how to produce and distribute a quality basketball product.
Euroleague Basketball consultant Marshall Glickman distributed and discussed a draft copy of a broadcasting manual for the broadcasters, clubs and leagues.
Euroleague Basketball CEO Jordi Bertomeu also welcomed those on hand, while Andrea Bassani, the Euroleague's director of Institutional Relations and Television, explained future objectives for all parties involved.