World Championship 2016 – new broadcast, new sponsors

9/16/2016 – The 2016 World Championship, which will take place from November 11th to 30th in New York, has announced that it has a new sponsor, EG Capital, and has partnered with Livestream to build a Virtual Reality broadcast platform that will allow people all over the world a 360° view of the match. This is a first for any sport and will cost viewers $15 – for all twelve games. Naturally there will be traditional broadcast with partner chess news sites. Press release + video.

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The World Chess Championship Match 2016 to become the first of any sport to be broadcast in 360° Virtual Reality

The World Chess Championship Match, to take place in New York in November of 2016, is to be broadcast live in 360° Virtual Reality, a global first for any sport. The VR broadcast of the Match, which will take place between Magnus Carlsen of Norway and his challenger Sergey Karjakin of Russia, will be exclusively available through Worldchess.com.



Ilya Merenzon, the Chief Executive of World Chess by Agon Ltd, the commercial rights holder to the World Chess Championship, said: “We are proud to announce that chess, one of the oldest sports in the world, is creating a global first: a totally new and immersive way of watching a contest that will captivate hundreds of millions of new and existing fans.”

World Chess has teamed up with Livestream to create the unprecedented viewer experience that will place the audience closer to the action than ever before.



As well as the 360° video stream there will be a number of other cameras within the players’ arena to provide multiple angles on the match. The online broadcast will include commentary in multiple languages, with guest appearances from celebrity chess fans, a chess analysis engine so viewers can gain an insight into the players’ strategic decisions, as well as a host of other features. “Everything we are doing is designed to enable viewers to get into the minds of the players. This is the first Chess World Championship for the smartphone generation,” Mr Merenzon added.

The VR broadcast has a stereoscopic mode that allows visitors to use Google Cardboard or similar VR headsets which cost just a few dollars to watch the tournament as if they were sitting right up to the players.

Livestream, the leading provider of live video services, is the broadcasting partner of the Championship Match. A spokesperson for Livestream said: “We are excited to be the streaming partner for the World Chess Championship at a time when the broadcast and overall presentation of the game is being transformed by Agon."

Chess fans can sign up to receive the VR broadcast by registering at www.worldchess.com. A season pass for the 12 round Championship Match will cost $15, or $1.25 per game. [Details on what you get for each package may be found here]. The pay-per-view model with advanced premium features, such as full 360-degree broadcast, is expected to significantly add to the commercial prospects of chess as a global sport and increase its appeal to brand partners.

A basic free live broadcast of the Championship Match will also be available to view. It will include a live representation of the game and will be made available to select broadcasting partners and chess federations that agree to join the World Chess affiliate program. Mr Merenzon said: “We are investing into the 360-degree broadcast because we believe that it is a major commercial opportunity for a sport which has required additional revenue streams to fulfill its global potential.

The millions of dollars in extra revenue that our new model will bring into the game will be re-invested in player prize money, events in the World Chess Championship cycle and in grass roots initiatives.

But we also want to ensure that as many people as possible can follow the Match and recognise that not everyone is prepared to pay to follow the Championship Match – that’s why we will offer a free broadcast as well.” The 360° Virtual Reality broadcast will be available to view by anyone with a smartphone, tablet or computer or VR device.

Magnus Carlsen, the reigning World Champion, said: “In my opinion, chess has the potential to reach and engage a much broader audience than what we see today. To succeed with this, innovation, and most of all quality in the production and transmission, are key elements.”

The full information about the Championship Match broadcast and subscription options is available at worldchess.com/nyc2016 starting September 12.

EG Capital Advisors signs deal with Agon Ltd to become sponsor of FIDE World Chess Championship Match 2016

EG Capital Advisors, the global holding company which, through its subsidiaries, advises the equivalent of over 3 billion USD of assets and provides retail and institutional clients with investment opportunities in multiple asset classes including publicly listed equity securities, private equity, fixed income and real estate, has become the second major sponsor of FIDE World Chess Championship Match 2016 in New York [the first was PhosAgro, as previously reported]. The deal underlines the growing commercial appeal of chess to international business sponsors.

Michael Stanton, Member of EG Capital Supervisory Board and founding partner, said: “I am very proud that EG Capital is becoming part of the story of chess at a pivotal and exciting time in the sport’s development. EG Capital is a very young and fast growing company and the World Chess Championship is the perfect vehicle for us to increase our brand awareness in key markets around the world. Chess is played and followed avidly by over 600 million people worldwide and I look forward to being able to introduce our business to this incredible audience.”

Press conference in Baku on the World Championship Match in New York...

... with FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg, EG representative Michael Stanton, and AGON Director Ilya Merenzon

Ilya Merenzon, Chief Executive of Agon Ltd, the commercial rights holder to the World Chess brand said: “I am delighted that in EG Capital, an asset manager that shares out commitment to innovation, we have a global partner which shares our vision for the transformation of chess as a global sport.”

Watch this 33-minute video which provides full details of the World Championship plans

EG Capital Advisors provides fixed and customised financial strategies on global and emerging public markets that span major investment classes including equity, fixed-income and multi-asset capabilities. The company also has a thriving private equity business, specialising in pre-IPO finance, small and mid-cap acquisitions and with a particular focus on the fin tech, technology and biotech sectors.

The global business joins PhosAgro, the global fertiliser and nitrates group, as a main sponsor for the eagerly awaited World Chess Championship Match in New York, which is taking place between 11-30 November.

The Match will be held in the Fulton Market Building, a five minute walk from Wall Street, and will also feature dedicated spectator and VIP lounges with panoramic views of the Brooklyn Bridge as well as retail space, a restaurant, TV studios and much more. Full details available in our announcement report.

World Championship 2016 Schedule

Date Day Event
Nov. 10 Thursday Opening Ceremony
Nov. 11 Friday Game 1
Nov. 12 Saturday Game 2
Nov. 13 Sunday Rest Day
Nov.r 14 Monday Game 3
Nov.r 15 Tuesday Game 4
Nov. 16 Wednesday Rest Day
Nov. 17 Thursday Game 5
Nov. 18 Friday Game 6
Nov. 19 Saturday Rest Day
 
Nov. 20 Sunday Game 7
Nov. 21 Monday Game 8
Nov. 22 Tuesday Rest Day
Nov. 23 Wednesday Game 9
Nov. 24 Thursday Game 10
Nov. 25 Friday Rest Day
Nov. 26 Saturday Game 11
Nov. 27 Sunday Rest Day
Nov. 28 Monday Game 12
Nov. 29 Tuesday Rest Day
Nov. 30 Wednesday Tiebreaks/closing

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IvanSalazarGiraldo IvanSalazarGiraldo 11/7/2016 09:43
Why did previous WWchess matches example Chenai were freely available (I saw the matches !),

Why is reserved to "first class" people with $15 Dollars ?

Fine, bill for virtual-reality video.
BUT put the games FREELY, AS IT ALWAYS WAS !

IvanSalazarGiraldo@outlook.com
doganof doganof 10/30/2016 12:04
Do we have to pay for live broadcating and commentary? Last WCC's live commentary with Peter Svidler was wonderful I think.
imdvb_8793 imdvb_8793 9/20/2016 12:10
You should probably go for game 1 then, Soulpower74. :) Or take a bit of a risk and go for game 2 or game 3 - because if Carlsen takes an early lead, the match is... well, not over, since we're talking about Karjakin, but... very, very likely to go the Carlsen-Anand route (meaning uninteresting), let's say. (In my opinion, at least - but I'm sure most people would agree.) So, you should go early, to get the most value for your money.
Soulpower74 Soulpower74 9/19/2016 11:44
I would like to see a sample on how this will work before I put my money down. Interesting concept.I plan to see one of the games live.
naisortep naisortep 9/18/2016 01:14
Let us keep an open mind. Sad to see so many people whining about it already in the comments. No wonder it is difficult to find sponsors for chess.
fons fons 9/18/2016 08:31
Nobody asked for this 3D, 360, virtual reality or any other techno-pseudo-fad-of-the-moment.

How about just trying to broadcast it properly the regular way. Oh wait, they couldn't even do that.

I'm starting to wonder if they even care if the broadcast succeeds or not.
reddawg07 reddawg07 9/17/2016 05:23
Live coverage of the Baku Olympiad and Sinquefeld Cup was more than adequate, what with websites like Chessbomb.com, Chess24, Chess.com and Chessbase.com covering the events.
Why would I need a virtual reality headset to watch the championship? The resolution probably won't be as good as 1080p or 4k streaming if the VR headset I am using is not expensive.

imdvb_8793 imdvb_8793 9/17/2016 12:34
OK, so will there be a free live video or not? I'm not getting that from the article or from any of the links provided - as another user also complained. And, if there is, will it be available to anybody, anywhere in the world?
jacersjacers jacersjacers 9/17/2016 12:06
Plus they have the tremendous Dylan Loeb McClain editing- reeling in flash deeply annotated punch -and -just watch those pieces fly coverage in Worldchess.com about midnight. Jude Acers/ New Orleans, Louisiana
NiceChappie NiceChappie 9/16/2016 08:24
I'm at an age where change is fundamentally eyed with suspicion, but this all sounds quite interesting and innovative.
I'm surprised at the negative response.
TheSame Wastrel TheSame Wastrel 9/16/2016 08:13
So they are going to make Carlsen and Karjakin wear camera headsets?
gmwdim gmwdim 9/16/2016 07:50
I don't care about this VR stuff, I care about being able to view and discuss the moves on the platform of my choosing, and a functional official website that doesn't constantly crash from overload.
tom_70 tom_70 9/16/2016 05:46
I'd be happy if we could just get through one tournament/match without everything crashing.
TMMM TMMM 9/16/2016 05:37
There were so many issues with the World Championship cycle and Agon organizing it, but thankfully they found a solution to all that: broadcast the games in virtual reality!
mistery mistery 9/16/2016 05:22
Because 3D is just what the candidates broadcast was missing...
yesenadam yesenadam 9/16/2016 05:13
"Naturally there will be traditional broadcast with partner chess news sites."
Sigh. Man, what a totally spineless website this is. Ok, sure, it's a press release. Blah blah. Don't know why I still expect better. :-) I seem to remember the glorious World Chess tradition somewhat differently. That sentence is laughable, to put it over-gently.

"A basic free live broadcast of the Championship Match will also be available to view. It will include a live representation of the game and will be made available to select broadcasting partners and chess federations that agree to join the World Chess affiliate program." So I wonder what that involves? World Chess affiliate program? I feel sorry for anyone roped into that, doesn't sound good, but who knows. On second reading.. 'a live representation'..a board? You have to join an affiliate program and don't even get a picture? hehe.

What's most important for me is not virtual reality goggle-view but good live commentary (preferably with a strong sense of humour like Mig, Jan etc) available online. Audio-only commentary is mostly fine. The St Louis/Sinquefield team are really great but there were quite a few 20 minute periods in the studio chatting while ignoring the games going on! Maybe 2 channels, 1 for patzers who need basic tactics explained, 1 for Life Patzers like myself who are happy with undiluted GM-talk.
jajalamapratapri jajalamapratapri 9/16/2016 05:06
More important: Will I be able to watch it on other sites, esp playchess.com?
Pionki Pionki 9/16/2016 01:44
I wonder what Fischer would say about everyone watching him from every angle while he's pondering over his next move.
Jarman Jarman 9/16/2016 01:40
Will engine analysis be available while on VR? I would jump right in!
Ropie Ropie 9/16/2016 12:16
The chess pieces should be equipped with camera's too. Imagine a Bishop standing at the side of the board watching his fellow pieces doing the job for him.
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