In a multi-layered partnership, Frank Warren’s Queensbury Promotions has announced that BT Sport and ITV will share live boxing content featuring the promoters’ fighters.
The latest deal follows on from BT’s acquisition of Pay-Per-View rights for Deontay Wilder’s heavyweight title clash against Tyson Fury, who is part of Queensbury Promotions, this Saturday.
Hall of Fame boxing promoter Frank Warren stated: “This is fantastic news for boxing, our boxers and even better for fans who now have another outlet to watch our exciting boxers. BT Sport is showing their long-term commitment to the sport and their desire to give boxing an even bigger audience is there for all to see with this new arrangement.
“This unique broadcasting partnership will continue and that brings bigger exposure for our boxers who can become household names.”
The two broadcasters first simulcast will be this Saturday at York Hall in London as Brad Foster puts his BBBofC British Super Bantam Title on the line against Lucien Reid.
BT Sports has in recent years revitalised its boxing portfolio, which has been partially helped by the deal struck with Frank Warren over exclusivity rights over the promoter’s fighters. BT’s biggest rivals Sky Sports ironically has an agreement with Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing in a deal similar to that of Queensbury Promotions.
Eddie Hearn’s stable allows Sky Sports to gain access to fighters including world champions Anthony Joshua, Callum Smith and Katie Taylor. Whereas, BT Sports are provided with a whole host of heavyweights including Daniel Dubois, Joy Joyce and Tyson Fury.
ITV and Boxing were synonymous in the 90s, covering the fights between Chris Eubank and Nigel Benn. The free-to-air broadcaster will be hoping to bring more fans of the sport back on to its terrestrial channels with the agreement with BT and Queensbury Promotions.
Additionally, ITV signed a three year deal with Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) in December to air at least 15 events on its network, further deepening its boxing catalogue.
Insider Insight: While not confirmed, it is expected that ITV will serve as a channel dedicated to showcasing some of Warren’s up and coming talents in an attempt to create more household names in Europe.
Either way, it’s a brilliant deal for all three organisations and spectators. ITV gets to showcase more boxing to a wider audience, Queensbury Promotions are able to build an individual brand for its boxers and BT Sport gain publicity for the deal, while not losing too much in the process.