PGA TOUR partners with Facebook to stream
60+ hours of exclusive live coverage across eight events
PONTE VEDRA BEACH, FLORIDA – The PGA TOUR has announced an agreement with Facebook to distribute exclusive Saturday and Sunday live competition coverage, on a free basis, from eight tournaments leading into the FedExCup Playoffs for the 2017-18 season. Airing on Facebook Watch in the United States, the coverage will be produced under the PGA TOUR LIVE brand and, similar to the TOUR’s subscription OTT service, will follow two featured groups that tee off in the morning of the third and final rounds. The PGA TOUR will uniquely produce this coverage for Facebook’s social video platform, with interactive elements aimed to engage fans. For example, the coverage will incorporate fan questions and comments.
“We are thrilled to add Facebook to an already impressive lineup of global digital and broadcast partners,” said Chris Wandell, VP Media Business Development of the PGA TOUR. “The PGA TOUR has put a premium on distributing exclusive content on emerging media platforms with a goal of reaching new and diverse audiences.”
The Facebook Watch coverage will begin at the Travelers Championship on Saturday, June 23, and Sunday, June 24. The remaining events in 2018 include: Quicken Loans National; A Military Tribute at The Greenbrier; John Deere Classic; RBC Canadian Open; World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational; Wyndham Championship; and THE NORTHERN TRUST.
“No matter if it’s a weekend foursome or water-cooler conversation about a top moment on TOUR, golf brings people together,” said Devi Mahadevia, Facebook’s North America Live Sports Programming Lead. “So we’re delighted to partner with the PGA TOUR to help it reach new fans and deliver interactive, live coverage on Facebook that taps into the social nature of the sport.”
The Facebook Watch-exclusive coverage window will begin at approximately 8:30 a.m. ET on both Saturday and Sunday of each event and will conclude when Golf Channel’s lead-in coverage begins. Following the featured group coverage, PGA TOUR LIVE Featured Holes coverage will be streamed globally on a non-exclusive basis on Facebook. To watch PGA TOUR’s coverage on Facebook, users can follow the PGA TOUR LIVE show Page at www.facebook.com/pgatourlive.
The agreement also calls for a range of on-demand programming, including tournament previews, round recaps and extended player highlights – all of which will be available in the United States on Facebook Watch and globally via the PGA TOUR LIVE show Page.
In May, the PGA TOUR and Facebook teamed up to stream 30+ hours of live coverage from THE PLAYERS Championship.
PGA TOUR Innovation Highlights
The PGA TOUR strives to be a leader in sports innovation with a goal of reaching new fans globally. THE PLAYERS Championship in 2017 marked the first time a major sports event distributed a live 360 VR experience on Twitter. Soon after, the PGA TOUR and Intel announced an exclusive relationship to produce and globally distribute live virtual reality (VR) and live 360 video via Twitter at six PGA TOUR events in 2017 and 2018.
The PGA TOUR was the first sports league to utilize AR in a live competition. Development of the PGA TOUR AR app in collaboration with POSSIBLE Mobile, part of the creative agency POSSIBLE, was aided by existing data gathered by ShotLink powered by CDW, the TOUR’s longstanding state-of-the-art scoring system. The PGA TOUR AR app was built using ARKit in iOS 11 to provide immersive AR experiences for the game of golf.
The PGA TOUR was also the first sports league to have a virtual reality app on the Oculus Platform and the first sports league to develop a unique experience for Amazon Echo.
The PGA TOUR HoloLens app, which debuted this year at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, is available for free in the Microsoft store (https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/store/b/home). The HoloLens app integrates post round data from ShotLink and CDW to create a 3D model of TPC Scottsdale that can be displayed on a tabletop or any flat horizontal surface. Users can zoom in to view the details of any hole and compare how two players performed on a hole and view heat maps of most ball traffic on a certain hole along with real time weather.
In 2018, the TOUR partnered with XUMO, the premier live and video-on-demand (VOD) over-the-top (OTT) service for the digital age, to bolster its growing lineup of diverse channel offerings. This marks the first ad-supported PGA TOUR “OTT channel” available on smart TVs. The PGA TOUR’s channel on XUMO is available on LG’s Channel Plus service, Hisense, Sharp, VIZIO and Panasonic connected devices.
About Facebook Watch
Facebook Watch is a place to discover and enjoy shows on Facebook. Home to a wide range of shows – from scripted comedy and drama, to competition and reality series, to individual creators and live sports – Facebook Watch is a video platform where episodic content, community and conversation come together. This is a personalized viewing experience, where you can discover new series based on what your friends are watching, and catch up on the shows you follow. Facebook Watch is available for free on mobile apps across Apple and Android, on desktop, laptop and on TV apps listed here: https://videoapp.fb.com/.
About PGA TOUR
By showcasing golf’s greatest players, the PGA TOUR engages, inspires and positively impacts our fans, partners and communities worldwide.
The PGA TOUR co-sanctions more than 130 tournaments on the PGA TOUR, PGA TOUR Champions, Web.com Tour, PGA TOUR Latinoamérica, Mackenzie Tour-PGA TOUR Canada and PGA TOUR Series-China. Members on the PGA TOUR represent the world’s best players, hailing from 25 countries (85 members are from outside the United States). Worldwide, PGA TOUR tournaments are broadcast to more than 1 billion households in 226 countries and territories in 23 languages. Virtually all tournaments are organized as non-profit organizations to maximize charitable giving. In 2017, tournaments across all Tours generated a record of more than $180 million for local and national charitable organizations, bringing the all-time total to $2.65 billion.
The PGA TOUR’s web site is PGATOUR.COM, the No. 1 site in golf, and the organization is headquartered in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.