Santa Monica, Calif. - Oct. 31, 2006 - Collaborating to develop and distribute innovative premium content and expand audience reach with integrated co-branded promotions, Bellrock Media and The Tennis Channel have launched Turbo Tennis, an addictive new mobile game. Turbo Tennis, now available for download, incorporates in-game branding for The Tennis Channel and will be marketed through on air ads, online ads, a dedicated web site, as well as live events and the network's newsletter. The partnership signals a new trend in how companies can build audiences through the combination of powerful entertainment content with inventive cross-device campaigns.
The companies are strongly positioned to reach target audiences in a noisy, fractured media environment, where the effectiveness of traditional advertising is declining. By teaming brands meaningfully for demographics that make consumption decisions based on peer influence and brand affinity, Bellrock Media and The Tennis Channel are solving contemporary challenges to gaining mindshare.
Bellrock is helmed by president Peter Levin, respected media and technology executive from The Creative Artists Agency (CAA) and The Walt Disney Company, CEO Hiroshi Nakata, top media executive and chief strategy officer and CFO of Yoshimoto Kogyo and CCO Ken Ng, from the creative core that brought JAMDAT Mobile public and to its successful sale to Electronic Arts. The company leverages its powerhouse leadership as well as its distribution reach and strategic opportunities through backers Intel Corporation, Yoshimoto Kogyo and Faith, Inc. Formed to address the needs of a changing marketplace, Bellrock owns, develops and distributes original platform-conscious digital entertainment content and technology blended with innovative brand marketing strategies.
"Bellrock Media has created an addictive, fun phone game that lets tennis fans and Tennis Channel viewers play wherever they are," said Lynn Forbes, Vice President, Web and New Media. "Tennis fans are passionate, and the sport is perfectly suited for these emerging new media applications and opportunities. We're proud to partner with Bellrock and to be a part of their unique vision for adding to The Tennis Channel's brand recognition."
Turbo Tennis represents the latest in a series of new media activities for The Tennis Channel. Earlier this year the network re-launched its Web site, unveiling a clean, sophisticated design with a comprehensive tennis travel section, extensive original broadband video content and expanded advertising space. During the US Open TheTennisChannel.com revealed an online content package that supported the tournament with blogs and predictions from tennis stars, and earlier this month the site generated its highest poll participation on record for a fan vote in conjunction with the show Open Access: Tennis Hotties.
"The Tennis Channel is the ideal partner for our Turbo Tennis game," Levin commented. "Their ability to reach a tennis-hungry audience across multiple platforms is spot on with our targeted co-branding strategy. They are a pleasure to work with and we look forward to exploring many applications with them going forward."
The Tennis Channel's marketing push for Turbo Tennis includes television spots beginning this month and continuing through the first quarter of 2008, web banners and a special promotional page on thetennischannel.com, venue-based marketing events, and placement within the cable network's newsletter reaching more than 80,000 e-mail subscribers through the holiday season.
About Turbo Tennis
Created by respected veteran of mobile game design, Ken Ng, Turbo Tennis is a comical spin on traditional tennis. The title provides three distinct venues, each with a different level of competition-local, regional and national. Players can use power-ups like "Voodoo Storm," which conjures clouds and lightning to paralyze the opposing player for a moment, or the "Ball and Chain," which clutches onto opponents' legs, slowing them considerably. The use of these power-ups is crucial as the player faces off against nine eccentric challengers, such as "Bitter Ballerina," "Heavy Metal Mike" and "Nihilist Nadia." The humor never ceases, as players can use the keys on their phones to cause their champions to celebrate after a match won, or "freak out" if a game doesn't go their way. Turbo Tennis is available for download on major carriers for $5.99 by sending the text message "TURBO" to "TENIS" (83647.)
About Bellrock Media
Bellrock Media ( www.bellrockmedia.com) strives to invent entertainment properties that ensure a captive audience and a sustainable popularity through cooperative ventures with major brands and also develops proprietary technology that enables next-generation content. The company offers highly effective reach of target audiences through the creation of original platform-conscious content that features organic integrations of branding and marketing messages, as well as distribution of content through emergent digital channels. Bellrock Media investors include Yoshimoto Kogyo, Intel Corporation and Faith Inc. The firm is uniquely positioned to address strategic opportunities in both the U.S. and Japan, focusing on the mobile and broadband markets. Bellrock Media, founded in 2005, is headquartered in Los Angeles and Tokyo.
About The Tennis Channel
The Tennis Channel ( www.thetennischannel.com) is the only 24-hour, television-based multimedia destination dedicated to tennis and the healthy, active lifestyle that surrounds it, and forges the personal connection between the professionals on the court and the game's millions of aficionados. The home for people who watch, play and live their passions through tennis, the network is a hybrid of comprehensive sports coverage, health and fitness programming, pop culture and entertainment access, and lifestyle and travel information. The Tennis Channel is the most concentrated single-sport network in television, with telecast rights to Roland Garros (the French Open), the US Open Series, ATP Masters Series, top-tier Sony Ericsson WTA Tour championship competitions, Davis Cup by BNP Paribas, Fed Cup and Hyundai Hopman Cup, the combination of which offer the compelling, ongoing story of the game's most dramatic rivalries, energetic personalities and emotional, yearlong journey.