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Neo bolsters French Open coverage with a dual feed

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MUMBAI: The Neo Sports Network will debut a dual feed broadcast plan for the tennis Grand Slam the French Open. The tournament runs from 26 May-9 June.

The aim of this effort is to ensure that tennis fans do not miss out on any top stars playing simultaneously at the French Open as the network‘s two channels, Neo Prime and Neo Sports, will have live feeds from separate courts.

This is the first time that anybody has done this for a tennis Grand Slam where two channels were used to broadcast separate feeds through the course of the event.

This initiative means that fans will have access to 225 hours of live content on the Neo Sports Network, which is almost twice as much as the 130-140 hours that are typically set aside for live coverage of a Grand Slam across broadcasters.

Neo Sports Broadcast COO Prasana Krishnan said, "The attraction of the French Open is extremely high and Neo‘s coverage is taking it to significant new landmarks. Last year, the reach of the event was a third better than Wimbledon and nearly equal to the other two Grand Slams put together. This year, we will be taking this to greater heights with dual feed coverage and nearly doubling live coverage to 225 hours, which is in line with our strategy to bring in more novelty with non-cricket properties."

The dual feed will ensure at least 45 additional hours of live content in prime time, providing a win-win situation for both viewers and advertisers.

There will also be live updates and contests on the Neo Prime Twitter handle (@neoprimetv) through the two week period to add to the interactive experience.

ZenithOptimedia managing partner Navin Khemka though doesn‘t feel that the dual feed will make much of a difference in terms of the ad revenue that the event gets. "The sport is too niche. A crore or two more isn‘t going to matter much. The rate isn‘t that high. I think that the aim is more about keeping the two channels alive." A tennis Grand Slam makes around 3-5 crore in ad revenue.

Rafael Nadal is gunning for an unprecedented eight title, Roger Federer is hunting for that 18th Grand Slam, and Novak Djokovic is just a trophy away from completing a career Grand Slam.

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