Manchester City inks deal with Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Jio to spur India push


Mukesh Ambani’s Jio Platforms Limited (Jio) entered into a regional partnership with Manchester City on 5 January, enabling India’s leading digital services brand become the Club’s Official Mobile Communications Network Partner in the country.

Supported and enabled by RISE Worldwide, a Reliance initiative, it is India’s largest sports and entertainment company. With this partnership, Man City and Jio will collaborate on a variety of engaging experiences that fans will be able to access through Jio’s digital ecosystem comprising JioTV, MyJio, Jio STB, JioEngage and other applications and platforms, in addition to exclusive giveaways and in-market activities.

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Man City’s OTT platform CITY will be integrated into the JioTV platform providing fans in India further access to exclusive club content including match highlights, live Manchester City Women’s team and Elite Development Squad fixtures, matchday content and City Studios documentaries, according to the agreement.

Apart from the Jio brand featuring across the club’s in-stadia and digital assets, RISE and Viacom18 will also leverage several partnership rights across their football and sports offerings as part of the new deal.

“We are excited to announce Jio’s exclusive partnership with Manchester City in India through which we will present City fans with experiences through a multitude of digitally powered immersive initiatives. We believe both brands share similar values of bringing transformational impact to their communities and through this partnership, we endeavour to bring the best of football to the sports communities and Man City fans in India,” news agency ANI quoted Reliance Jio Infocomm Limited’s chairman Akash Ambani as saying.

With the new pact, it is now proven that Ambani’s refining-to-retail conglomerate is keen to make inroads in the global sports business and is relying on its dominant telecom network to win partners. The billionaire’s family secured the digital rights of India’s top cricket league last year for $3.1 billion.

City Football Group CEO Ferran Soriano said, “We’re pleased to welcome Jio as an Official Partner of Manchester City today. The Club has a passionate and growing fanbase in India and we are continually exploring new ways to provide greater fan experiences for our followers in the region and around the globe, particularly within the digital and technology space. We look forward to working with Jio as we develop these opportunities throughout the partnership.”

With agency inputs.

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