Netplay aims to bring sportsbook to Channel 5

Netplay aims to bring sportsbook to Channel 5

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Netplay TV is hoping to introduce sportsbook elements to its Channel 5 offering after signing a new deal with the UK terrestrial broadcaster.

Netplay’s SuperCasino is on the Channel 5 post-midnight schedule seven days a week, but the terms of the new agreement, which runs until 2018, give more flexibility, allowing the company to branch out into different product verticals.

The new deal seems to be an opportunity for both Netplay and Channel 5 to shake things up, with the broadcaster keen on fresh ideas after being acquired by US media group Viacom last year. The deal also allows “significant pre-midnight advertising” for Netplay, which has been the headline sponsor of the channel’s Celebrity Big Brother programme in recent years, with both parties keen to expand a relationship that began in 2009.

Speaking to TotallyGaming.com, recently-appointed Netplay chief executive Bjarke Larsen said: “It’s an important deal for us as it means that we will be on terrestrial television until 2018.

“The key thing from our point of view is that it allows for more flexibility, so we are looking to experiment more with other product verticals. Our offering to date has been primarily casino, but we can now look at options such as sports book.

“It is very early days as to what the new formats will be, and they will be things that we work on with Channel 5 over the course of the next three years. It’s an opportunity for us and the broadcaster. Channel 5 has been taken over and is working on new ideas, and we are keen to support that.”

Netplay has a busy year ahead, with its contract with UK commercial broadcaster ITV – for which it broadcasts Jackpot 247 six nights a week - set to expire next April.

The company, which also runs the Jackpot247 channel on Sky, is keen to focus on content after concentrating on completing its simplified wallet with Playtech over recent months. 

Larsen, who became Netplay’s chief executive in January after seven years with the company, added: “Just as has been the case with Channel 5 in the last few months, we are in talks with ITV about renewing.

“We are in a pretty unique position in the UK in our tying together of terrestrial broadcasting and gaming. This year we now have more space for developing in-house products and are moving into a more mobile-centric offering.”

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