Chennai: At the back of an exciting conclusion to the first leg of RuPay Pro Volleyball League(PVL) in Kochi, the organisers on Friday announced that the first edition got a thumbs-up from its fans watching it on television as well as online.
The league, which is an initiative of Baseline Ventures and the Volleyball Federation of India, began on February 2 in Kochi and will move to Chennai for the second leg starting on February 16.
In its first week itself, the league was sampled by over 14.3 million viewers on Sony Pictures Networks India and their digital platform SonyLIV got close to 1 million viewers watching the matches.
“The impressive viewership numbers are validation of our efforts for a sport like volleyball which is so spectator-friendly. The on-ground response we got in Kochi was also very heartening. The early signs are encouraging and will push us to work harder,” said Joy Bhattacharjya, CEO, RuPay PVL.
The first seven matches clocked an average reach of 2.9 million. Sony Pictures Networks India (SPN) Sports Network is the official broadcast partner of the league.
Mr. Rajesh Kaul, Chief Revenue Officer, Distribution and Head – Sports Business, Sony Pictures Networks, commented, “The response from the inaugural PVL is in line with our expectations. Audience engagement has been very high both on-screen and on-ground as well, with over 14 million viewers across India tuning in to SONY SIX and SONY TEN 3 channels to watch RuPayPVL so far. While the sport has always had a strong following in the South, it is exciting to see markets like Assam. West Bengal, Gujarat and Haryana also showing great interest. This is a clear indication of the widening interest amongst audiences for multi-sports, which has been a key focus area for us to build the sporting environment in the country.”
The game that garnered the highest rating was when Calicut Heroes played U Mumba Volley on February 5th with 328,000 impressions (number of viewers at any given point of time during the match). On the other hand, per match impressions were at 237,000 and average time spent per viewer per match stood at 11 minutes.
Even the volleyball fantasy game built by MyTeam11 has seen a consistent rise in daily users leading the company to double to prize pool from Rs. 50 thousand to Rs. 1 lac. From the initial days of the league with 15 thousand gaming participants, the platform has now touched over 49 thousand fans.
The second leg of the RuPayPVL starts from February 16 2019 in Chennai at the Jawaharlal Nehru Indoor Stadium where Chennai Spartans will take on U Mumba Volley. It will be broadcast Live and Exclusive on SONY SIX and SONY TEN 3 and will also be streamed live on SONY LIV from 6:50 PM IST.