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Satnews Daily
January 17th, 2017

Global Eagle Entertainment Plays Cricket ... Gains Worldwide Rights 

Global Eagle Entertainment Inc. (GEE) (NASDAQ:ENT) has entered into broadcasting agreement for a sport that actually stops for a tea break. "Matches can (and do!) last for days, the players wear woolly jumpers, and games often break for high tea on the village green."

Global Eagle Entertainment today announced it has entered into an agreement with the International Cricket Council (ICC) to offer telecasts of major events to commercial flights and cruise ships through its global VSAT networks. The ICC is the global governing body for cricket. Representing 105 members, the ICC governs and administrates the game and is responsible for the staging of major international tournaments including the ICC World Cup and Women’s World Cup, ICC Champions Trophy and the ICC Men’s and Women’s World T20. The ICC presides over the ICC Code of Conduct and appoints the umpires and referees who officiate at all sanctioned Test matches, One Day International and Twenty20 Internationals. The ICC Development department works with associate and affiliate members to improve the quality of international cricket, build better cricket systems, get more people playing cricket and grow the game.

The ICC has granted GEE worldwide rights to provide 1,140 hours of  live cricket programming over a four-year period, from 2016-2019. The 2017 Champions Trophy and 2019 Cricket World Cup are among the 172 important events to be offered.  

Jim Griffiths, senior vice president, content distribution and purchasing, of GEE said, “Cricket is a leading global sport, and the ICC broadcasts will be well received by devoted fans and newcomers alike. We are particularly excited that one of the world’s most viewed events, the Cricket World Cup, is among the broadcasts.” 

Campbell Jamieson, ICC General Manager, Commercial added, “A key component of the ICC strategy is to create an environment where cricket is exciting to play and watch, while improving the quality and reach of the international game. Our partnership with GEE enables us to expand our live broadcast reach to include airline and maritime audiences across the globe which is an exciting opportunity." 

Today’s announcement adds to GEE’s growing portfolio of sporting events agreements. Last year, the company signed separate global distribution contracts with Lagardère Sports and Premiership Rugby to broadcast telecasts of their popular sporting events.