ESS boosts Premier League in South East Asia

Sports broadcaster ESPN Star Sports continues to strengthen its English Premier League franchise in South East Asia. “ESPN Star Sports strong programing values, formidable team of pundits and interactive elements excite viewers, making them switch on to our networks to watch their favourite football matches and shows. Our remarkable presentation attracts viewers and leads to high ratings. As much as 45 percent viewing time is added to the viewer-ship of football via viewing of non-live football programming like Nokia Football Crazy, Tiger First Edition and others on our networks, ESS senior VP Advertising Sales, Charles Less said as quoted by Indian Television.

ESS recorded a television rating of 11.5 for the Manchester United vs. Liverpool match telecast on 22 January 2006 in the Cable Male 15 + target group (TG). The match touched the top rating of 14.5. But the company says its marketing efforts has extended the fan-following for clubs beyond those two top teams, with new favourites in Chelsea, Wigan Athletic, Aston Villa, Middlesborough and other clubs also emerging.

Viewership for late night matches has also been on the rise. "Football has no prime time. It is clear that football fans extend their television viewing time to accommodate the matches of their choice," Less said.

The UEFA Champions League is a prime example of late night or early morning slot attracting high TV ratings. A Manchester United match played at 3:30 am in the morning rated a high 8.2 among the young upscale male TG, capturing a channel share of 83 per cent. Across the Male 15 + TG also the rating was a high of 3.2.

The Manchester United vs. Fulham match on 4 February 2006 got a 6 TVR and the Chelsea vs. Liverpool on 5 February got a TVR of 10.1. The highest rated match so far in this season though continues to be the Manchester United vs Chelsea game played on 6 November 2005, which registered a high of 12.6 TVR and peaked at 15.5 TVR.