NEW YORK, Jan. 13, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- The Whistle – the first sports entertainment network designed specifically to serve young fans and athletes – has added MLB Advanced Media (MLBAM), the interactive media and Internet company of Major League Baseball, to its growing list of pro league partners and equity holders.
The partnership includes content development, giving the Whistle's audience "inside access" to the sport, and technological development, leveraging MLBAM's expertise to support the growth of the Whistle's new channels to connect with young fans.
As part of the agreement, The Whistle will deliver short-form, youth-friendly baseball programming and will feature baseball content across all of its digital platforms, including its website, mobile apps and YouTube through its new multi-channel sports network (The Whistle Network) which launched earlier this month with two million subscribers. In addition, MLBAM will provide technology services and video infrastructure supporting TheWhistle.com and other online Whistle content.
The Whistle aggregates, curates and develops sports content for a young fan's perspective, covering all sports from backyards to schoolyards to pro stadiums and racetracks. Its content includes sports news and highlights, sports science and math, interviews with professional athletes, fitness, nutrition and sports games and contests.
"The Whistle is an important platform for young fans to inspire them through the sports they play and the teams and athletes they follow every day," said Martin Keely, SVP, Partner Solutions, MLBAM. "We are proud to collaborate with The Whistle and play a role in developing meaningful, relevant content and engaging applications that deliver on their mission."
In addition to MLBAM, other professional leagues and associations that are equity holders in or content partners with The Whistle include the NFL, PGA Tour, NASCAR, US Skiing, Major League Lacrosse, US Soccer, the Harlem Globetrotters and Alli Sports.
"This new partnership gives us direct access to America's pastime and some of the most compelling athletes you will find in any sport. It also gives millions of young fans the chance to be inspired by and instructed in the individual strength, skill and commitment required to perform at pro levels," said Whistle Co-Founder Jeff Urban.
The Whistle's executive team includes founder and CEO John West, a successful entrepreneur who has started, grown and sold multiple companies; co-founder and Chief Marketing Officer Urban, a former SVP of Sports Marketing at Gatorade; Brian Diamond, a former SVP of Production at Spike TV and MTV; Julie Kikla, a founding member of the YouTube Sports team that leads digital efforts; and EVP Brian Selander, a former management consultant and public policy advisor.
Former President and Chief Operating Officer of Major League Baseball and Chairman of MLBAM Bob DuPuy praised the partnership.
"Generations have grown up gathering around the TV or radio to learn about our national past-time and their favorite teams and players. The Whistle is how the new generation of fans can connect with sports," DuPuy said. "This deal is another major league development for The Whistle. MLBAM with it's proven track record of innovation and leadership in the interactive space will help lead their technology efforts and keep them cutting edge."
A team of judges that included the Angel Capital Association, Dell Founders Club, NAB Show, National Venture Capital Association, Startup America Partnership, The Paley Center and Springboard Enterprises named The Whistle one of the most "revolutionary" market-ready start-ups in the country.
ABOUT MLB ADVANCED MEDIA:
Established in June 2000 following a unanimous vote by the 30 Major League Baseball club owners to centralize all of Baseball's Internet operations, MLB Advanced Media LP (MLBAM) is the interactive media and Internet company of Major League Baseball. MLBAM manages the official league site, MLB.com, and each of the 30 individual Club sites to create the most comprehensive Major League Baseball resource on the Internet. MLBAM also develops, deploys and distributes the highest-grossing sports app, At Bat, as well as manages live video content for dozens of clients. It captures, encodes and distributes tens of thousands of live video events annually, powering more live events on the Internet than any other property in the world.
ABOUT THE WHISTLE:
The Whistle is the first sports entertainment network built across multiple platforms to engage and activate the new generation of fans and athletes. Its owners and investors include sports heroes such as Derek Jeter, Peyton Manning, and Tim Wakefield, media pioneers including the former heads of Nickelodeon and MTV, and league equity and content partners like the NFL, PGA Tour, NASCAR, Major League Lacrosse, US Ski and Snowboard Association, US Soccer, the Harlem Globetrotters and Alli Sports, who each deliver Whistle fans inside access to professional sports. The Whistle Network (TWN) is the company's YouTube-based Multi-Channel Network (MCN), which launched with over two million subscribers and provides sports content creators tools, services and expertise to grow while connecting with The Whistle's audience on multiple platforms.
SOURCE The Whistle