As part of deal, 51 new live events and more than 200 matches
AUSTIN, Texas -- May 24, 2018 -- Today, FloSports, the innovator in live sports and original content, announced the acquisition of The Rugby Channel from Rugby International Marketing (RIM). The deal immediately awards FloSports the rights to all matches previously under The Rugby Channel, bringing 51 new competitions annually to FloRugby.com and accelerating FloRugby's investment in growing the sport of rugby in the U.S. and globally.
Alongside the acquisition announcement, FloSports announced that World Rugby Hall of Famer Phaidra Knight will join FloRugby as a regular contributor, providing live commentary, columns, training and technique videos, and other content to the site.
In addition, FloRugby will provide extended exclusive access to USA Rugby, giving fans all new ways to keep up with their favorite players and teams. FloRugby's enhanced coverage starts with a collection of exclusive content featuring several Team USA stars, including Men's Eagle, Mike Te'o; current Women's 7s star Kelsi Stockert, Team USA Olympian Joanne Fa'avesi; former captain of the USA U19 team and current San Diego Legion, Cam Dolan; former USA U20 team captain and MVP, Hanco Germishuys; powerful hooker and current Austin Elite-front rower, Peter Malcolm; and Rudy Scholz Award winner, USA Eagle and current Glendale Raptor, Bryce Campbell.
FloRugby launched in early 2017 with the hiring of senior editor Alex Goff, one of the sport's most renowned reporters and analysts. Under Alex's leadership, FloRugby has become the leading source for North American rugby news and analysis with exclusive high school and college team and player rankings, breaking news, studio shows, and more.
With this acquisition, FloRugby now will have more than 100 days of live rugby coverage year-round, including matches and competitions over 45 weekends. Now more than ever, USA Rugby fans will have the opportunity to engage with quality content while the sport itself gains valuable exposure to hungry sports fans.
"Rugby is one of the fastest-growing sports in America, and this deal allows us to elevate the coverage of the sport to new heights," FloSports co-founder and COO Mark Floreani said. "We want to provide fans a platform to connect with and follow their favorite athletes and teams, and to discover more live rugby than they've ever had access to. This is an exciting day for rugby fans."
"We are thrilled to partner with FloSports in taking USA Rugby programming and properties to the next level," said former USA Rugby National Team veteran of 12 years and Rugby International Marketing CEO, Pam Kosanke. "This move exposes rugby to a broader community of passionate sports fans who view digital streaming as their first screen choice. FloSports continues to demonstrate an unparalleled commitment to marketing and promotion, and unique programming that turns young athletes into sports heroes. We are excited to work with FloSports to grow the game of rugby in America and give fans the coverage and creative content they deserve. With broadcast opportunities included, this partnership is a total package for USA Rugby."
As part of the acquisition, FloSports will air 51 live events throughout the remainder of 2018 on FloRugby.com, including:
USA Rugby National Team Matches (Men's, Women's, A-Level, and Age Grade National Teams)
• Top 14
• Pro 14
• Anglo Welsh Cup
• Singha 7s
• England International Test Matches (Men's and Women's)
• Men's and Women's USA Rugby College Championships
• Men's and Women's Club 15s Championships
• Women's Premier League Rugby
• Men's and Women's Club 7s Championships
These competitions will be added to FloRugby's existing schedule of live events, which include:
• June 2, 2018: Wales vs. South Africa (Men's)
• August 3-4, 2018: North American Invitational 7s
• October 20-21: 2018 West Coast 7s
• November 2018: New York 7s
• 2018-2020: Life University and Saint Mary's College Home Matches
"American rugby fans win in this deal," Goff said. "First off, this makes FloRugby the one-stop location for covering the Men's and Women's Eagles and major domestic championships, alongside some outstanding international matches. The coverage we give these events allows fans to engage and find ongoing information on the teams and players during the weeks leading up to any event.
"I'm excited to continue covering this great game, and also to be able to help American rugby grow by making it easier for fans to get the live and midweek coverage they want, not to mention everything else we have in the works with Phaidra Knight and many other notable Eagles."
As part of the acquisition, The Rugby Channel subscribers will soon have their monthly or yearly subscriptions automatically transferred to a FloRugby PRO subscription at no cost. Subscribers will continue to pay their current rates. Either monthly or annual PRO subscriptions on FloRugby.com unlock access to premium content across the entire FloSports network.
Watch the matches across all screens by downloading the FloSports app on iOS, Roku, or Apple TV 4, as well as on desktop or mobile web via FloRugby.com.
For more information, visit www.FloSports.tv
FloSports, the innovator in live digital sports and original content, partners with event rights holders and governing bodies to unlock a world of sports coverage that true fans have been waiting for. Through live streaming of premier events, original video programming, and weekly studio shows, FloSports is growing the sports, the events, the athletes, and the fans. Current verticals under the FloSports header include Rugby, Basketball, MMA, Football, Wrestling, Track, Gymnastics, Cycling, and more.
About USA Rugby
Established in 1975, USA Rugby is the national governing body for the sport of rugby in America and a Full Sport Member of the United States Olympic Committee. USA Rugby is charged with developing the game on all levels with more than 130,000 active memberships. The union oversees four senior national teams, multiple collegiate and high school All-American sides, and an emerging Olympic development pathway for elite athletes. USA Rugby also hosts more than 30 national playoff and championship events each year as a service to its members. Rugby International Marketing operates as the commercial arm to USA Rugby. Visit www.usarugby.org for more information.