Golf Channel locked in a cornerstone of its morning programming for the next decade with an extension of its agreement to broadcast all European Tour tournaments through 2024.
The new agreement, which begins in 2015, ensures the continuation of a relationship that dates to the 1995 launch of Golf Channel. The European Tour’s Dubai Desert Classic was the first tournament aired on the channel.
“The European Tour’s regular morning timeslot has kicked off Golf Channel’s tournament coverage days since the network’s launch and this extension further solidifies our strong partnership, which now will span three decades with this new agreement,” said Mike McCarley, president of Golf Channel.
Golf Channel reports that European Tour viewership has increased nearly 60 percent since the channel became part of the NBC Sports Group in January 2011, when Comcast, which owned Golf Channel, acquired a majority stake in NBCUniversal. That relationship led to a new wrinkle this year, with NBC airing weekend coverage of the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open, won by Phil Mickelson. NBC will air the Scottish Open again in 2014.
The new 10-year agreement includes the rights for Golf Channel’s networks in Canada and Japan to broadcast the European Tour.
The deal was announced before the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship. Financial terms were not disclosed.