Leicester fans in Lampang - entertaining a new global fanbase

Breaking all the rules

Once upon a time you supported the club of the town where you were born – it was your team for life. It was the unwritten rule – through rain and shine, promotion and relegation. For better or for worse you were stuck with it.

Narrowly avoiding relegation season after season is no fun, so it’s only natural that we were attracted by the success of the more glamourous clubs. So we broke the rule and supported the glory teams in our domestic league instead.

But then we broke the rule again. Not content with being top of the table on home soil we noticed that those fancy Spanish clubs demonstrated flair, European hardware in their trophy cabinet and better hair.

Today, the cool kids on my street wear Real Madrid and Barcelona kits. I’m not joking. Look.

Siamese Foxes

Meanwhile, in Thailand a new army of Leicester City supporters ("Siamese Foxes") attribute their beloved teams’ success to the spiritual intervention of Thai Buddhist monks and the Foxes’ merchandise store in Bangkok has sold out of shirts.

These days you’re allowed to support a team from any league, from any part of the world. And why not - it makes life more exciting. As a new generation of fans emerge in new territories, the demand for rich sports content is set to grow. Broadcasters realise that there’s an appetite for coverage of leagues beyond their borders – La Liga, Bundesliga, Serie A and the mighty Premier League all attract huge audiences worldwide.

With sports magazine shows being created and edited on a 24/7 basis globally, the demand for content has never been greater. Broadcasters in particular often need access to content quickly – to react to live events and news, to build supporting content around a live broadcast and review shows.

While news travels fast in the world of sport, large volumes of broadcast quality files do not.

Rather like hooliganism, delivery of content tape should be a thing of the past – and yet it still happens. When files are born digital, supplying data from a server room in the host country can also provide a poor experience for customers based in faraway countries. Waiting for those 120MB/Sec broadcast masters to download can take forever – especially when production teams are reacting to live events or have a show to deliver that day. That’s assuming the customer can find the content they need – storage servers containing valuable assets are generally locked down and search interfaces non-existent.

Attempting to host a high resolution library across CDNs would be unfeasible - CDNs are only economically viable where there are relatively small numbers of files serving a large number of users. Great for Netflix but not for companies dealing with exclusive content and a relatively small number of high paying clients.

Imagen’s Global Distribution Network technology uses public cloud infrastructure and replicates media libraries to any number of strategically positioned PoPs around the globe. It enables broadcast quality files to be delivered from the closest PoP in the fastest time possible.

It's a premium performance for premium sports content, allowing high value customers to search entire video libraries in seconds, playback proxies, create edits, run workflows and download high resolution content - all through a branded, highly secure web platform.

End to end stuff...

Imagen allows sports rights holders to fully realise the commercial value of their content and expand their markets overseas – to deliver a vast library of legacy content to a new audience in new territories – providing never seen before footage to a growing worldwide fan base.

Imagen can also be configured to distinguish between user profiles, providing a B2C subscription based VOD platform for fans while also catering to your production and broadcast partner’s high-resolution needs. All engagement takes place through a secure, fully branded platform with full insight into user engagement via advanced analytics and automated billing for subscription payments.

Watch this video.

Sometimes it's good to break the rules, look beyond the immediate and open ourselves up to a fascinating world of new leagues and clubs with exotic names and improbable strips. We're all Muangthong United supporters now. Come on the Quilins!

Used by some of the biggest media companies in the world, Imagen is hugely scalable and allows any size business - from an SME to global sports brands to enjoy the same experience and opportunities using Imagen's flexible architecture. No large capex investment is required and pricing is based on the amount of content managed.

The explosion of video is changing everything and Imagen is ready to help any organisation unlock the value of their content, protect their brand and provide rapid access to large volumes of media on a truly global scale.

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