Africa’s leading pay TV operator, StarTimes Group, on Tuesday signed a ground-breaking media agreement with Ghana Football Association (GFA), vowing to promote the influence of Ghana Premier League in Sub-Sahara Africa and help the development of Ghanaian football in the coming decade.
According to the strategic partnership agreement, StarTimes acquires all media rights of The Ghana Premier League, The Gala, The National Division One League, The Football Association Cup, The Ghana Women’s League and The Ghana Juvenile League in next 10 years.
StarTimes will invest more on programming production of Ghana Premier League and broadcast more matches of the league in Ghana and other African countries.
President of StarTimes Group, Pang Xinxing, told reporters on the signing ceremony: “The partnership between StarTimes and Ghana Football Association is not only the cooperation between the two sides, but also a starting of cooperation between China and Africa on football industry.”
Pang noted that Ghana football has stayed at a high level in world football by playing at World Cup finals three times in succession and winning African Cup of Nations four times.“We would like to bring more excellent football matches to nearly nine million subscribers of StarTimes in Africa and may introduce Ghana Premier League to Chinese football fans in the future, being a bridge between Chinese and African sports industries. ”
“StarTimes is a world brand and well-known in the whole Africa. Ghana football is also a well-known brand and our national team is one of strongest powers in Africa,” said President of Ghana Football Association, Kwesi Nyantakyi, noting that the partnership between StarTimes and Ghana Football Association is looking forward to improving development of football in Ghana.
Nyantakyi said: “We authorise media rights of all major leagues or tournaments under Ghana Football Association to StarTimes. And StarTimes will deeply involve itself in the production and promotion of these leagues and bring much investment to our country.”
StarTimes is an experienced TV operator in football broadcasting. In 2015, StarTimes signed an exclusive broadcasting contract with Bundesliga and the International Champions Cup (ICC) for five successive years, and got the wide rights to televise the French Ligue 1, and the Italian Serie A, for all Sub-Saharan countries.
In June 2016, StarTimes also signed an exclusive broadcasting contract with the Chinese Super League for three successive years and acquired media rights to provide extensive coverage in Sub-Saharan Africa to the European Qualifiers for 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia.
“StarTimes’ experience and advantage in broadcasting technology will bring Ghana’s football to a new age,” Nyantakyi noted.
StarTimes attached great importance to African native sports content and have sponsored SC Villa and KCCA FC clubs in Uganda football league. In February 2015, StarTimes signed world football icon and Nigeria football legend, Kanu Nwankwo as their Continental Brand Ambassador. As StarTimes Ambassador, Kanu is engaged in a series of football promotion events in Africa.
Pang said: “The Ghana Premier League is the first top African native league that StarTimes signs and people can expect more in the future.”