Sony Pictures Networks India has launched two new HD channels and re-branded the recently acquired Ten Group as Sony Ten. With the two new launches, the group now has a total of 11 channels and has consolidated its sports brands together under the business vertical - Sony Pictures Sports Network.
The re-branding sees channels Ten 1, Ten 2, Ten 3 and Ten HD1 rebranded as Sony Ten 1, Sony Ten 2, Sony Ten 3 and Sony Ten 1 HD. The two channels it launched are Sony Ten 2 HD and Sony Ten 3 HD.
Quoting numbers from BARC, Rajesh Kaul, president, sports and distribution, Sony Pictures Networks, India, claimed that the network has overtaken Star Sports this year to be the market leader in the sports. The combined market share of Ten and Sony was more than 50 per cent on 1 June 2017 (prior to the ICC Champions Trophy), and Kaul believes with upcoming sports properties such as the India's tour to Sri Lanka followed by South Africa and the FIFA U-17 World Cup, the network should end the year at around 60 per cent market share.
Kaul made that claim at a press event in Mumbai on 18 July in which the group also unveiled its brand ambassador, Sachin Tendulkar. A campaign conceptualised by J. Walter Thompson consisting of films featuring Tendulkar were rolled out.
NP Singh, CEO, Sony Pictures Networks India, said, "Our corporate philosophy of 'Go-Beyond' encourages us to be brave, curious, insightful and visionary in everything we do. It takes leaders to Go-beyond at every step of the game because leaders just don’t prepare for the future, they create it. And, it is the leader-mindset that has taken us from a single sports channel in 2012 to 11 dedicated sports channels in a span of five years. Currently, we are among the largest sports broadcasters in the Indian subcontinent. The future of sports is multi-sport. Therefore, we want to engage viewers in a multi-sports milieu. As SPN’s Ambassador for Sports, Sachin echoes our sentiment and intent to grow the viewership of different sports”
Kaul added, "At Sony Pictures Networks, we are committed to providing an unparalleled sports viewing experience with the best leagues, best athletes and the best of sport entertainment. We are in a unique position with over 11, 000 hours of live content this year that has given us the opportunity to create channel destinations for different sports. Each of our 11 channels will project a distinct content line-up from our expansive portfolio of domestic and national sporting properties. As SPN’s Ambassador’s for Sports, Sachin Tendulkar, represents excellence, passion, determination, exacting standards of skill. He is known to push the boundaries to achieve more every time, which is also aligned to our network’s credo, Go-Beyond.”
The 11 channels under the group include Sony Six, Sony Six HD (home of cricket), Sony Ten 1 and Sony Ten 1 HD (home of wrestling), Sony Ten 2 and Sony Ten 2 HD (home of football), Sony Ten 3 and Sony Ten 3 HD (Hindi offering), Sony ESPN and Sony ESPN HD (international sports including NBA and tennis) and Sony Ten Golf HD.