With only hours until the 100th edition of the Tour de France begins and just hours after News Corporation’s historic split into 21st Century Fox and New News Corp has completed, there is a cross-over between these two seemingly unrelated events. The common thread is Team Sky.
Team Sky announced earlier in the week that its long-time partner News Corporation had expanded its partnership with the world’s leading pro-cycling team. The extended partnership will see the Team Sky race kit and team vehicles feature the new 21st Century Fox logo, beginning with Team Sky’s participation in the 100th edition of the Tour de France.
21st Century Fox is the new vehicle housing News Corporation’s film and TV assets (such as FOX, FX, Fox News Channel, Fox Sports Network, National Geographic Channels, STAR, Twentieth Century Fox Film, Shine Group, Sky Deutschland, Sky Italia and its equity interests in BSkyB and Tata Sky). Australia media assets such as Fox Sports Australia, Foxtel and REA Group are now held by New News Corp (which primarily holds the print assets of News Corporation). News Corporation’s split into 21st Century Fox and New News Corp completed on 28 June 2013 (read more here).
James Murdoch, News Corporation’s Deputy Chief Operating Officer, said of its new partnership with Team Sky that:
“It’s a great time to increase our commitment to Team Sky and to add the support of an exciting new entertainment brand. We’re proud of the team’s success so far, its professionalism and its approach to attracting new fans to the sport and increasing grassroots participation in cycling.”
Team Sky reported on its website that last season Team Sky gave more media value to their partners and sponsors than any other cycling team, delivering over $550m in advertising value (according a Repucom report).
21st Century Fox’s new backing of Team Sky is perfectly timed for the new company (and its new logo) to feature on the world’s leading pro-cycling team, at arguably the world’s largest annual sporting event the Tour de France.
Global television coverage of the event is massive and 21st Century Fox’s new logo will be beamed into living rooms worldwide, just hours after the company was formally established.
In Australia, the Tour de France kicks off on SBS at 10PM AEST Saturday night, or at 8:15PM on SBS’s Skoda Tour Tracker App.