CBC unveils five-year TV skate competition deal

CBC and VisionTV answer Bell Media’s 10-year deal with Skate Canada by landing a five-year deal with the International Skating Union.

After rival Bell Media did a 10-year deal with Skate Canada that includes the rights to the Canadian Figure Skating Championships, the CBC on Wednesday responded with a new five-year deal with the International Skating Union to air a slew of Canadian and international skating competitions.

And in a surprise move, the ISU deal, unveiled by newly-installed executive director of CBC sports properties, Jeffrey Orridge, includes Zoomer Television’s VisionTV as a broadcast partner for the CBC.

The ISU agreement, comprising around 120 hours of skating competition telecasts annually, includes the 2011 ISU Grand Prix Final in Quebec City in December 2011, and the ISU World Figure Skating Championships, to be held in London, Ontario in 2013.

The ISU events will air on CBC and the specialty channel Bold TV, as well as VisionTV.

“Historically, skating has been inspirational family-friendly viewing, making the tie to VisionTV a strong one,” Bill Roberts, CEO of ZoomerMedia Television, said in a statement.

The ISU deal still leaves CTV, TSN and RDS to air Skate Canada events, starting with the 2011 Skate Canada International in Mississauga, Ontario in October.

From Playback Daily