CTV, TSN and RDS Become the Official Broadcasters of Skate Canada with Landmark 10-Year Deal

- Bell Media's CTV, TSN and RDS to broadcast premier domestic figure skating events -
- Deal includes all multimedia broadcast rights -
-Figure skating returns to CTV for first time since 2007 -

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TORONTO, May 25, 2011 /CNW/ - Bell Media and Skate Canada announced today they have reached a landmark 10-year rights agreement making Bell Media's CTV, TSN and RDS the official broadcasters of Skate Canada. As part of the agreement, CTV, TSN and RDS acquire exclusive multimedia rights to all of Skate Canada's premier domestic events including Skate Canada International and the Canadian Figure Skating Championships.

Beginning with the 2011-12 season, fans can expect to see figure skating coverage each season over the next 10 years on CTV, TSN and TSN2, along with French coverage on RDS. Online and mobile coverage will also be available on Bell Media platforms. Coverage gets underway with 2011 SKATE CANADA INTERNATIONAL taking place October 27-30 from Mississauga, ON. 

This marks the return of figure skating to CTV for the first time since 2007.  A longtime supporter of figure skating in Canada, CTV was Canada's figure skating network for more than four decades dating back to the early 1970s.

CTV will also work with Skate Canada to develop new made-for-television figure skating events. 

"As we saw at Vancouver 2010, figure skating has a special place in the hearts of Canadians. We all take pride in the incredible performances of stars like Patrick Chan, Joannie Rochette, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir," said Phil King, President, CTV Programming and Sports. "Bell Media is thrilled to bring figure skating back to CTV and give fans all of the excitement, style and drama across multiple platforms and programs." 

"Following a competitive process to determine our broadcast partner, we are obviously very excited about reaching this 10-year agreement with Bell Media because of the myriad of new opportunities it offers," said William Thompson, CEO, Skate Canada.  "With such a dedicated, professional team providing full network coverage through CTV, TSN and RDS, figure skating fans will have many opportunities to see our athletes competing.  We're also energized about the business initiatives that will be a natural outcome of this relationship, and the possibilities for sponsorship, advertising and branding across such a wide range of television and digital platforms." 

In addition to live event coverage viewers can expect figure skating news and event coverage across the Bell Media family including SPORTSCENTRE, ETALK, OFF THE RECORD WITH MICHAEL LANDSBERG, CANADA AM, SPORTS 30, TSN RADIO 1050, THE MARILYN DENIS SHOW and various CTV News outlets.

About Skate Canada
Skate Canada, the national governing body responsible for the development and administration of skating in Canada, is the largest figure skating association in the world. With over 4,800 registered coaches, skating programs for athletes of all ages are offered at nearly 1,300 skating clubs and schools across the country. Skate Canada is an association dedicated to providing every Canadian the opportunity to learn life skills while experiencing the power, strength and creativity of one of Canada's premier sports. 

In 2011, Skate Canada produced two world champions, Patrick Chan in senior men's and Andrei Rogozine in junior men's.  2010 Olympic Champions Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir won the world silver medal. 

About Bell Media
Bell Media is Canada's premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio and digital. With passion and an unrelenting commitment to excellence, Bell Media entertains, informs and inspires Canadians. Bell Media owns 28 conventional stations, including CTV, Canada's #1 television network and lead broadcaster of the London 2012 Olympic Games, and owns and operates 29 specialty channels, including TSN, Canada's #1 specialty channel and RDS, Canada's #1 French-language specialty channel. Bell Media also owns 33 radio stations, dozens of websites including the Sympatico.ca portal, and Dome Productions. Bell Media is owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE), Canada's largest communications company. For more on Bell Media, please visit www.bellmedia.ca.

SOURCE News - Media

For further information:

Greg McIsaac, TSN
(w) 416.384.5180, (c) 416.458.3591, greg.mcisaac@bellmedia.ca 

Barb MacDonald, Skate Canada
(w) 613.747.1007 (c) 613.894.1769, bmacdonald@skatecanada.ca

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