HT Media has bought a majority stake of 50.5% stake in an online football portal called Sports Asia through its Singapore subsidiary HT Overseas, the company informed the stock exchanges. Sports Asia is a Singapore-based company and has a website, mobile and tablet app, and a messaging app. However, we were unable to find an app from the company on the Google Play Store and the iOS store. We weren’t even able to find the website either (let us know if you can find it).
Update: A MediaNama reader pointed us to this website called 90min.in which says that it is powered by HT Media. The website says it is the largest fan-generated football media brand with over 200 million monthly pages views. Writers can sign into the site with their Facebook credentials and write for the website. Top published content will be selected by 90min.in’s editors to be featured on the Daily Telegraph, Huffington Post, ITV, The Independent, ZOO Online, MSN Sport UK, GQ, London24 and others, giving full credit to writers. Top writers will get journalistic titles and a portfolio of published work, as well as correspondent press passes to industry events and meetups. They will also get opportunities to interview former and current Premier League Managers through an exclusive media partnership with the League Managers Association.
HT Media acquired the company at SGD 1 per share and the transaction is expected to be completed by July 1. Sports Asia will help HT Media diversify in digital content development.
In India, Network 18 had launched a football portal called FootballNext in January 2015. It looks like that the company has still maintained this property and is operating under the News18 umbrella (Network 18 has a long history of starting and merging wesbsites).
In May 2015, Times Internet signed a deal with Perform Group‘s football portal Goal to bring worldwide content to India. Under the deal, Times Internet will have exclusive rights to the Goal brand in India and will drive local commercialization of Goal across both desktop and mobile.
Sony Pictures Networks football rights: Last month, Sony Pictures Networks India (SPN) acquired the exclusive television rights to broadcast Premier Futsal, for India. It is the world’s first-ever multi-national futsal league and SPN will broadcast all Premier Futsal matches live and exclusive on Sony SIX, SONY ESPN and Sony AATH channels across its network. It will also be streamed live on Sony LIV. It also cquired exclusive television and digital rights for the 2016 Copa América Centenario, for the Indian sub-continent. SPL also has the rights for Euro 2016, the tournament held once every four years, featuring most of the top European teams.
Koovs investment: Last month, HT Media picked up 8.31% in online fashion retailer Koovs for £3 million. This was a strategic investment, and HT Media bought 12 million equity shares in Koovs plc, at £0.25 each, paying cash. CFO Vinay Mittal mentioned in an analyst call that this was an ads for equity deal. More on that here.