Building on the momentum of its growing video production unit to provide long- and short-form sports programming, Sports Illustrated expects to launch a streaming video service later this year.
This will be parent Time Inc’s second streaming offering, following last year’s launch of the People and Entertainment Weekly Network. It also comes hot on the heels of a partnership with LIFE VR and Endemol Shine Beyond USA to capture the first-ever complete ascent of Everest in virtual reality.
The new offer will feature a wide range of content, including original series, exclusive documentaries, analysis from SI's roster of experts, fantasy sports shows, and live and on-demand programming from marquee sports and entertainment events and the brand’s influential extensions such as SI Swimsuit and the annual Sportsperson of the Year celebration. The network will also feature productions from the SI Group family of brands like GOLF and The MMQB, and will count a library of more than 50 hours of sports video content at launch.
"At a time when real facts, genuine relationships, integrity and trust are at a premium, our brands are being sought out more than ever for the quality and diversity of their video storytelling," said Time president and CEO Rich Battista. "As you saw today, we couldn’t be more excited to build on our digital momentum by continuing to innovate and evolve how we create and deliver compelling video content to fans and marketers across all platforms."
Video has quickly become a lynchpin of Time Inc’s storytelling. In 2017, the company expects to produce more than 50,000 videos including 150 new and returning franchises and series and over 1,500 live programming hours. Last month, it achieved more than one billion video views across its network and is on pace to exceed 8.5 billion views this year, nearly doubling the previous year’s total.