March 2, 2006
Fresh on the heels of the Torino Olympics, we just closed a financing with an early stage company called World Championship Sports Network.
I am more than a bit biased, but I think this is a really exciting opportunity.
The easiest way to describe this company is as a network for Olympic Sports, distributed over broadband, TV and mobile. While we all get to watch things like skiing, snowboarding, swimming, track and field, volleyball, etc., during national broadcasts of the Olympic Games, outside of the Olympics, the vast majority of world championship caliber events for these sports are not accessible anywhere in North America.
That’s where WCSN comes in. They have managed to secure exclusive rights to distribute coverage of these sports’ World Championships, and other major international events, to US broadband, TV and mobile viewers.
So for those of you who would like to see how Lindsey Jacobellis, Bode Miller, and other US Olympians perform over the next four years, the only place you’ll be able to find regular coverage of their events will be WCSN.
From an investment perspective, this opportunity struck a familiar chord with me and my partners — valuable proprietary content, with demonstrated consumer interest, that is well suited to be consumed over the new IP platforms.
As with our investments in Turbine Entertainment (which has exclusive rights to produce massively multiplayer games for premier franchises like Dungeons and Dragons and Lord of the Rings) and Heavy.com (which develops and owns its own content), we are excited about the propsects for new media companies which have proprietary content that is attractive to broad consumer audiences.