Etisalat and STARZPLAY partner on exclusive rights to broadcast and stream the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 in the MENA region

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  • Cricket enthusiasts in the MENA region can Live the Game and enjoy the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 action anytime, anywhere LIVE on CricLife Max
  • As part of the deal with Etisalat, STARZPLAY will also stream Etisalat’s CricLife and CricLife2 channels

Dubai, UAE: Etisalat, one of the world’s leading telecom groups in emerging markets, today announced it has won the rights from Star TV Network to broadcast the most anticipated and action-packed ICC Men’s T20 World Cup across the MENA region. It will partner with STARZPLAY, MENA region’s leading subscription video on demand (SVOD) service, to ensure all cricket fans across the region enjoy the full series.

The broadcast rights for the MENA belong exclusively to Etisalat and the partnership with STARZPLAY will give cricket fans access to all 45 matches taking place in the UAE and Oman from October 17 to November 14, 2021.

Regional cricket fans eagerly waiting for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 can enjoy all the cricket frenzy and live the game on CricLife Max channel via Etisalat’s eLife TV, Switch TV and the STARZPLAY app in UAE, while subscribers in the rest of the MENA region can enjoy the game exclusively via STARZPLAY. CricLife Max is broadcasting all the matches LIVE along-with highlights, pre-shows and post-match analysis, with full match replays on the other CricLife channels. 

Cricket is already a permanent feature on Switch TV. Now through the deal with Etisalat, STARZPLAY will also be streaming CricLife and CricLife2 channels which have the rights for home matches of various cricket playing nations including India, Pakistan, South Africa, New Zealand, West Indies as well as the exciting T20 leagues like Pakistan Super League and Caribbean Premier League.

Khaled Elkhouly, Chief Consumer Officer, Etisalat, said: “There is no other provider better placed in the UAE to bring sports fans the complete depth and breadth of sports action. eLife customers have access to an unprecedented line-up to watch live sport from the best providers across the region. Our investment in bringing the very best of cricket action to the UAE and beyond will further solidify our drive. Partnering with STARZPLAY not only for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup but for our CricLife channels will mean more fans can watch their teams play in more places than ever before across the GCC.”

Danny Bates, Chief Commercial Officer, STARZPLAY said: “We have been steadily building on our focus to deliver live sporting events to our subscribers, and nothing beats the joy of bringing the action of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup to the region. This is a prestigious win for us, and we thank our long-standing associates, Etisalat as well as Star TV Network, for their support. With cricket widely followed in the region, we are bridging a gap for our subscribers, who can now effortlessly watch all the live cricket action from this exciting T20 championship. Our aim is to become the ultimate TV entertainment destination and we will continue to explore new and innovative ways to offer the best sporting experience for our subscribers.”

Harry Griffith, (Head of Syndication, Star TV Network), said, “This is a ground-breaking collaboration which will provide the largest ever reach for an ICC event in the region. We are delighted to associate with Etisalat and STARZPLAY to enhance the coverage of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup across the Middle East. With the event being staged in the UAE and Oman it is crucial the tournament is more accessible than ever before. This is a truly exciting juncture for all cricket fans in the Middle East.”

Cricket lovers can enjoy these matches from the comfort and safety of their homes and anytime, anywhere on any device with eLife TV, Switch TV, STARZPLAY and eLife ON.

About STARZPLAY:

STARZPLAY is a subscription video on demand service that streams Hollywood movies, TV shows, documentaries, the same-time-as-the-US series – plus dedicated kids’ entertainment and Arabic content – to 20 countries across MENA and Pakistan.

The service carries thousands of premium titles including exclusive STARZPLAY original content such as Baghdad Central, STARZ Original content such as Power, Outlander, Spartacus and The White Queen as well as premium content with add-ons such as discovery+, UFC Arabia, BluTV , Premier Sports and AD Sports.”

STARZPLAY has secured tie ups with a host of leading, global studios including MGM, 20th Century Fox, Disney, Warner Bros, Universal, Discovery and Fox International Channels.

STARZ, a Lionsgate company (NYSE: LGF.A, LGF.B) and State Street Global Advisors (SSGA) are the lead investors along with media and technology investment firms including SEQ Capital Partners and Delta Partners. In early 2021, STARZPLAY secured its first independent financing in the region of US$25 million (approx. AED 92 million) from Abu Dhabi based Ruya Partners.

Reaching over 1.8 million subscribers, STARZPLAY allows subscribers to watch its full HD and 4K content via most internet-enabled devices, smart TVs and game consoles, and is widely available on regional IPTV services. Its iOS and Android apps – installed on more than three million devices – also allow downloads for offline playback.

About Etisalat:

Etisalat Group is one of the world’s leading telecom groups in emerging markets. With consolidated net revenue at AED 51.7 billion and consolidated net profit of AED 9.0 billion for 2020, its high credit ratings reflect the company’s strong balance sheet and proven long-term performance.

Headquartered in Abu Dhabi, Etisalat was established over four decades ago in the UAE as the country’s first telecommunications service provider. A blue-chip organisation, Etisalat Group provides innovative solutions and services to 156.1 million subscribers in 16 countries across the Middle East, Asia and Africa.

Etisalat is ranked the strongest brand across all categories in Middle East and Africa by Brand Finance, and is the fastest mobile network globally by Ookla® Speedtest® in 2021 for the second consecutive year.