Econet Media ESPN IAAF Kwesé Sports

Kwesé and ESPN agree exclusive sub-Saharan Africa broadcast agreement for IAAF events

August 31, 2017

Econet Media will bring International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) competitions to its Kwesé TV platform in sub-Saharan Africa from 2018, having reached an exclusive agreement with ESPN, who were representing the IAAF.

The six-year deal, brokered by ESPN’s Media Distribution unit, begins on 1 January 2018 with Kwesé TV becoming the exclusive broadcaster for IAAF events and content in sub-Saharan Africa, these will feature across its free-to-air and pay TV channels as well as the new Kwesé Play service.

The deal includes the next three IAAF World Championships (2019 IAAF World Championships in Doha, Qatar, 2021 IAAF World Championships in Eugene, Ore., USA and 2023 IAAF World Championships*) as well as the next three IAAF World Indoor Championships (2018 IAAF World Indoor Championships in Birmingham, UK, 2020 and 2022) and more than a dozen other competitions in the IAAF World Athletics Series.

Through its pan-African footprint, Kwesé Sports broadcast the 2017 IAAF World Championships in London which dominated sports headlines as they showcased the world’s finest athletes.

The rights agreement is the latest in Kwesé and ESPN’s successful partnership after the brands signed a long-term collaboration agreement for sub-Saharan Africa in October 2016. This year the partnership has launched a dedicated ESPN channel on Kwesé Sports, and the Kwesé website and app.

The deal comes in the wake of the recent announcement that the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and ESPN Media Distribution are collaborating to represent the media rights to IAAF events across Europe and Africa – bringing a unique, combined ability to maximise the profile of Athletics and increase access to the sport’s top global competitions to hundreds of millions of fans across the two continents via a combination of free-to-air television, pay television and digital media platforms.

Joseph Hundah, President and Group CEO of Econet Media, said: “Our exclusive collaboration with ESPN was forged on our collective commitment to bringing the best in world class sporting content to African audiences.

“Athletics enjoys a huge following on the continent with African sports men and women dominating in a number of categories. The IAAF is an important addition to our Kwese Sports portfolio as we extend our offering and build Africa’s most diverse sports destination.”

Econet Media ESPN IAAF Kwesé Sports