National Audience, Global Stage: ONE World Sports Relaunches Network in HD With Encompass Digital Media
Two years ago, ONE World Sports was launched to deliver Asian sports to an English-speaking, U.S.-based audience. Today, that mission is expanding beyond the Far East to include sports events from around the world. To better serve its audience stateside, ONE World Sports recently relaunched its global network, unveiling a state-of-the-art HD production facility in Stamford, CT, with Encompass Digital Media.
“We’re relaunching to grow our distribution and connect our global sports to our fans,” says Joel Feld, SVP/executive producer, ONE World Sports. “Relaunching the network was an important and critical part of that strategy.”
Although ONE World Sports’ content was filmed in HD prior to relaunch, the network used a standard-definition workflow to distribute content to viewers.
“When the new management team came in at the early part of this year,” Feld continues, “we identified that we needed to be in high definition and upgrade our production, our promotion, and all of the pieces of our network in order to be successful.”
To upgrade operations, ONE World Sports turned to Encompass Digital Media, which owns and operates broadcast facilities throughout the U.S., Latin America, UK, and Asia and provides content management and distribution for sports leagues and broadcasters ASN, CBS Sports Network, NFL Network, Outside TV, ROOT Sports, TVG, Sportsman Channel, and YES Network.
Together, the two created the ONE World Sports Broadcast Center within Encompass’s Stamford facility.
“Encompass is proud to partner with ONE World Sports on their HD-rebranding launch and to support their unique vision of innovation in global sports programming,” says Scott Baskin, EVP/GM, Encompass New York Metro. “ONE World Sports is the perfect fit for the global suite of services we offer, and we look forward to providing HD transmission and production services through our Stamford, CT, state-of-the-art facility.”
Beginning in late June, ONE World Sports and Encompass worked at a fevered pace to rebuild a production facility in preparation for a soft launch on July 31 and full relaunch on Aug. 3. That included installation of HD equipment from Cisco, Miranda Technologies, Avid, Harris, Snell; archiving systems from Front Porch Digital; and the addition of four edit suites complete with Adobe technology.
“We took a look at all of our operations and decided that we needed an entirely new focus on our operations,” says Feld. “Moving the facility here to Encompass gave us the best series of options and tools to work with in order to do that: everything from satellite transmission to file ingestion to master control to engineering and technical support.”
Full-time master control, uplink, satellite-space segment, production, and postproduction for ONE World Sports will be housed in Encompass’s Stamford facility. Content-acquisition services will be handled by the company’s Singapore facilities and delivered to Stamford via fiber connectivity.
Says Feld, “We had a shared vision with Encompass and the right leadership and support in place to execute so we can now bring the very best global sports programming to our fans.”
As part of the network relaunch, ONE World Sports also overhauled the on-air branding and graphics and added a 24/7 global sports bottom-line ticker.
In addition to the fiber connecting Encompass’s Stamford and Singapore facilities, ONE CONNXT provides three additional content-transport lines (ONE CONNXT is an end-to-end HD/SD content-distribution service owned and operated by One Media Corp., parent company of ONE World Sports). The three ONE CONNXT lines, alongside the fiber path, allow ONE World Sports to feed multiple shows simultaneously on four separate transport paths.
For example, ONE World Sports might transmit a live broadcast using fiber, while sending additional live content for same-day turnaround or postproduction via ONE CONNXT lines. ONE CONNXT also serves as a backup for live programming and as the primary transport path for ONE World Sports’ Japanese baseball coverage, which is fed live to Singapore for English-language commentary, fibered to Stamford, and broadcast live.
ONE World Sports distributes more than 2,400 hours of sports programming annually across its linear and digital platforms. The network offers exclusive coverage of the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil Asian soccer qualifiers; Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Champions League; Australia A-League, Japan J.League, China Super League, and Korea K-League soccer; the Chinese Basketball Association; Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB), including the home games of the Yomiuri Giants and games of the NPB’s Pacific League teams; and the OneAsia Golf Tour.
Recently, the network inked a deal with Arsenal FC to present delayed soccer matches and exclusive interviews with players and managers and will broadcast all seven home games of the New York Cosmos.
Additional content includes live and same-day action of league, championship. and qualification competitions in soccer, basketball, baseball, golf, table tennis, and badminton, including ITTF Table Tennis Pro Series, the BWF Badminton Super Series, and PSA Championship Squash.