Shortly after foraying into regional market with the launch of Star Sports 1 Tamil, Star India announces the launch of India's first private free-to-air sports channel, Star Sports First. The channel will go on air on July 21, 2017 on DD's FTA DTH platform Freedish. This will allow sports fans and enthusiasts to watch sports action in Hindi, without paying any subscription fee.
The channel will air the Pro Kabaddi League Season 5, which will begin in Hyderabad on July 28, 2017. In addition, the channel's programme calendar will also include BCCI domestic cricket tournaments, domestic football tournament etc.
Star India spokesperson says in a media statement "Television penetration in India has grown exponentially. We recognise that there is a very sizeable subset of this universe that is not on conventional pay TV. In the 'Free-to-air' content that they have access to, sports content is mostly absent and only sporadically available. It is our belief that there is, however, an eager appetite for it and that is the reason to launch SS First. We believe tens of millions of fans will be created for many different sports offerings through our content bouquet."
"Kya aapki life se sports action missing hai", asks former Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, in the film 'Star Sports First, Aana Hai First', capturing the essence of the launch of the FTA channel. The TVC runs fans through the sports that will now be accessible on the Star Sports First channel.
The launch of Star Sports First is supported by a 360-degree marketing campaign, Star Sports First, Aana Hai First, which includes television, radio, OOH and on-ground activations.