October 13, 2016

Australia's Basketball League NBL is being broadcast on Veqta in India


For an Indian basketball fan, there exists a common duality: focus on the game at home, and keep a curious eye on the game at its highest level, the NBA. Our fandom exists both towards Amjyot Singh and Kevin Durant, we will check on the results of the Indian national team as well as the Cleveland Cavaliers. We turn to whatever means we have - internet websites, TV, social media - to get the results and news we want and be fully updated. This duality often extends to FIBA international basketball, the Olympics, action from the Euroleague, or the growing CBA in China.

Now, for even the more passionate fans among us, there is yet another option, very easily available for Indian audiences. Veqta, a newly launched OTT platform for digital sports broadcasting, has signed a deal to broadcast Australia's National Basketball League (NBL) exclusively in India starting this season up to 2020-21. Veqta's various digital platforms could potentially help the NBL gain new fans in India who want to think beyond the NBA for foreign leagues.

The NBL is Australia's top basketball league. It was founded in 1979 and currently features eight teams - seven from Australia and one from New Zealand. The Perth Wildcats - the winningest franchise in NBL history - have started the 2016-17 season as reigning champions. Australian NBA players like Luc Longley and Patty Mills have played in the NBL in the past, as has 'Captain Jack' Stephen Jackson himself. The legendary Australian Andrew Gaze won seven NBL MVP awards.

Australia is fast-becoming a hub of international basketball talent. Their national squad 'The Boomers' - led by Andrew Bogut, Patty Mills, Matthew Dellavedova - recently finished fourth in the Rio Olympics. A number of other intriguing talents like 76ers' number one pick Ben Simmons and Utah's Dante Exum have further shone the light on Aussie basketball. The NBL is ambitious to propel their international success to bring positive changes to the league back home as well. The new season of the NBL tipped off on October 6.

"We are delighted to have signed this partnership with VEQTA," said Jeremy Loeliger, General Manager of the NBL. "They are a young ambitious digital company that is taking an innovative approach to digital sports broadcasting. Just like Australia, India is a sports mad country and by partnering with VEQTA we have a fantastic opportunity to take the NBL to yet another one of the biggest sports markets in the world. There are currently in excess of 300 million smartphone users in India and by 2020 this figure is set to grow a staggering 260% to 800 million users. The opportunity to engage with India’s large, knowledgeable sports loving public is something the NBL is very excited about."

"Basketball is the number one school sport in tier 1 & 2 cities in India and has a very strong following in the young urban audience," said Veqta's co-foudner and director Gaurav Gill. "Indian sports fans have a growing apetite for high quality global sports content and VEQTA is committed to bringing them the best content from around the world. Through this long term digital rights agreement we believe that the viewership of NBL games will increase substantially in the country."

The Veqta mobile app focuses on a unique selection of sports for the Indian audience, including Cricket, Football, MMA, Wrestling, Basketball, Motorsports, Tennis, Badminton, Olympic Sports etc.

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