I’m currently working on a couple of business-related items here in the office, but you can expect links to come up soon. In the meantime, I received a press release from Bristol, CT where many of you know is where ESPN is located. From this small town that has seen ESPN grow in lengths and bounds from the Little Engine That Could to the big behemoth comes the latest word that the ESPN brand is spreading to Europe.
Last year, ESPN bought the North American Sports Network, otherwise known as NASN, which provides MLB, the NFL, NHL and NBA to the UK and other European countries. Soon after the purchase, NASN became heavy with plenty of ESPN programming.
Now, ESPN is going to rebrand NASN as ESPN America on February 1, 2009, which is the date of Super Bowl XLIII. The new logo kind of looks like the old Justice League of America crest.
North American Sports Network to Become ESPN AmericaNew Brand to Kick Off on Super Bowl Sunday
October 2, 2008
ESPN today announced that North American Sports Network (NASN) will be re-branded ESPN America, starting Super Bowl Sunday, 1 February, 2009. The network will continue to bring the best of North American sports to fans across Europe and the Middle East.ESPN America will continue NASN’s tradition of being the only network in Europe completely dedicated to North American sports. The channel broadcasts over 800 live and as-live sports events each year from Major League Baseball (MLB), National Hockey League (NHL), National Football League (NFL) and NCAA American Football and Basketball. ESPN America will also show the Super Bowl in a number of countries across Europe including Germany, France, the Netherlands and Poland. Additionally, the network provides high-quality signature ESPN original studio programmes, such as Pardon the Interruption, Around the Horn, The Sports Reporters, Baseball Tonight, College GameDay, NASCAR Now and more.
Since ESPN acquired NASN in 2007, the network has expanded to 14 million households across 43 countries, with an additional three million subscribers in the Middle East.
“The announcement of our first ESPN-branded live television channel in Europe is a momentous day for the company,” said Lynne Frank, Senior Vice President and Managing Director of ESPN in Europe, Middle East, and Africa. “ESPN America’s programming lineup is unparalleled in the region, and will serve fans of North American sports throughout Europe and the Middle East. Our business continues to grow. ESPN America will sit alongside ESPN Classic, and our digital properties, ESPN360.com, ESPNSoccernet, Cricinfo, ESPNScrum.com and Racing-live.com.”
ESPN is a well known brand in Asia so this is not surprising that it would change NASN to ESPN. I’m actually surprised it took this long. Now, I wonder when TSN in Canada will rebrand to ESPN Canada.