On Tuesday 26 August, a delegation from Cote d’Ivoire basketball national team visited StarTimes headquarter in Beijing, StarTimes being FIBA World Cup China 2019 exclusive broadcaster.
Coach Paolo Povia and Captain Guy Landry Edi were showed StarTimes’ studio and facilities before giving an interview to StarTimes Sport channels and Chinese media.
Regarding StarTimes’ development in Africa, Captain Guy Landry Edi mentioned that “To give the Ivoirian people, even the poorest, the opportunity to watch the World Cup, it will give us strength as we know that all across the country people will be watching us.”
Coach Paolo Povia said about StarTimes’ plans for FIBA World Cup: “I am very surprised. It is an incredible organization with a lot of enthusiasm. I see there are a lot of nice projects about Cote d’Ivoire, about basket-ball and about this World Cup. I think the best way to let people know about our sport is to show it on TV.”
Africa will be represented by five teams: Angola, Cote d’Ivoire, Nigeria, Senegal and Tunisia.
Guy Landry Edi said Cote d’Ivoire “clearly wants to get qualified to the second stage because it would open the way to the Olympic Games. But in general, playing a World Cup is something delightful, you have to enjoy the moment. And the best way to do that is to win.”
It is the first time China is organizing such a high-level basketball event since the 2008 Olympic Games. And for the first time in FIBA’s history, World Cup will be played with 32 teams instead of 24.
Paolo Povia said that « This World Cup is very balanced. All teams have something that can make a difference. Serbia has been very solid these past two years, Spain too. Greece, where the current NBA Most Valuable Player is playing, could surprise everybody. Team USA is still an excellent team and China is the host country. This World Cup is very open.”
StarTimes, Africa’s leading pay-TV operator acquired exclusive media rights in Sub-Saharan Africa for FIBA’s national team competitions during the period 2017-2021, including the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 in China.
StarTimes Francophone Africa General Manager, Philippe Zou, said he was “much honored that delegates from Cote d’Ivoire national team visited our studio as we are putting a lot of efforts into promoting basketball in Africa.
“Several African countries have a long tradition of basketball and Africa’s potential is huge. There are five African countries competing this year. We hope the FIBA World Cup 2019 will be the opportunity for Africa to shine and for African people to fall in love with basketball.”
FIBA World Cup 2019 will take place in eight cities from China from August 31st to September 15th. StarTimes will air all matches live and in HD.
StarTimes Sports Director Shi Maochu said “We expect a great show as the tournament is very open with a ‘weak’ Team USA and a strong Serbia. We prepared special TV shows to review the tournament and teams, and for each match day, we will have analysis and highlights to make sure fans can fully enjoy the World Cup. All shows and matches will also be available on our streaming application StarTimes ON.”
StarTimes is the leading digital TV operator in Africa, serving 28 million users with a signal covering the whole continent and a massive distribution network of 170+ brand halls and 30,000+ distributors in 37 countries. StarTimes owns a featured content platform, with 480 authorized channels consisting of news, movies, series, sports, entertainment, children’s programs, etc. The company’s vision is “To ensure that every African family can access, afford, watch and share the beauty of digital TV”.