Representatives from some of Europe’s leading broadcasters have met in Glasgow and Berlin for a World Broadcaster Meeting ahead of the 2018 European Championships to learn more about the ongoing preparations for the inaugural multisport event.
The European Championships is a major new multisport event taking place every four years, supported by Europe’s free-to-air broadcasters, which aggregates the existing senior continental championships of Athletics (European Athletics), Aquatics (LEN), Cycling (UEC), Gymnastics (UEG), Rowing (FISA), Triathlon (ETU), with a new Golf Team Championships (ET & LET) – all unified under a common brand.
Glasgow and Berlin will host the first ever edition of the Championships in the summer of 2018 and the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) already has agreements with almost 40 broadcasters worldwide to cover the event. There will be up to 300 hours of programming across television, radio and online, free to air in all the main markets, with an anticipated 2,700 hours of television coverage across the Championships.
During seven days packed with site visits, plenary sessions and unilateral meetings participants discussed live production, venue and IBC/BOC facilities as well as individual broadcaster's service requirements. Broadcasters have shown a significant interest in digital services including multi-platform content publication and digital enrichment, allowing them to bring the excitement and emotion of the Championships to all audiences.
And following the meetings – the first time the host cities have come together to host a broadcaster meeting – both Glasgow and Berlin were praised for their commitment to ensuring that the inaugural event is a success both on the field of play and on television screens and digital channels across Europe.
Achim Hammer, Head of Program for ZDF, and Carsten Flügel, Head of Program for ARD, said, “A very good balance of sessions, workshops and site visits made this World Broadcaster Meeting a very special one. Having two host cities is a challenge for the organisers as well as for us broadcasters. But their determination to make the event a success is clear."
Ron Chakraborty from BBC Sport said, "The Berlin-Glasgow World Broadcaster Meeting was a very positive event. It was well organised, with informative and detailed presentations and site visits. The Host Broadcaster and Local Organising Committees were joined-up in their approach. They were also clear about their collaboration in order to help make the overall European event a success."
Franck Choquard, Head of Products and Marketing at Eurovision Media Services, said, "Next year will be a great opportunity for us to work together with rights-holding broadcasters, host cities and sports federations to produce outstanding content for this new, exciting event. We look forward to bringing our experience, new technologies and creativity forward to create cutting-edge services, including innovative remote IP solutions, as well as an unforgettable experience for viewers around the world."
BBC and ARD-ZDF have previously their outlined large-scale broadcast plans for the Championships. ARD-ZDF will be broadcasting around 100 hours of live sport throughout the Championships, while the BBC confirmed it will treat the European Championships like other “big events” such as the Olympic Games, FIFA World Cup and IAAF World Championships.