India: SPN & WWE expand content deal
March 31, 2020
By Nik Roseveare
Sony Pictures Networks India (SPN) and WWE have announced a five-year extension with an expanded broadcast agreement that will deliver WWE’s weekly flagship programming and localised content in India and the Indian subcontinent, making SPN the exclusive home to WWE in-ring content across its TV and digital platforms.
As part of the agreement, SPN will have the rights to air weekly shows Raw, SmackDown and NXT as well as WWE PPV specials live on its sports and digital platforms in English, Hindi and regional languages.
The expanded partnership also provides SPN the rights to WWE Network which hosts thousands of hours of content to be made available to audiences in India exclusively through SonyLIV, SPN’s OTT platform. In addition and for the first time, SPN will curate content from WWE’s extensive video library which includes live events, iconic matches, interviews with Legends, reality shows, documentaries and more, on its own platforms.
Rajesh Kaul, Head Sports and Chief Revenue Officer Distribution, Sony Pictures Networks India, commented: “WWE has been consistently ranking in the top three properties across all sports networks in India, dominating the sports entertainment space. We are delighted to extend our partnership with WWE in a first of its kind deal that will give us an increased exposure to valuable content and reach out to a broader viewer base across India on multiple platforms.”
James Rosenstock, WWE Executive Vice-President, International, added: “India is a strategically important market for WWE and Sony Pictures Networks has been an extraordinary partner in helping to grow our fanbase in the region making it one of the most-watched sports properties. The expanded partnership gives our passionate fans new opportunities to engage with the WWE brand.”
Bucking the trend of cancelled events as a result of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, Wrestlemania 36 takes place this weekend.