Dutch Ice hockey appoints Spring Media as growth partner

March 5, 2024

The international full-service agency has been appointed by IJshockey Nederland as long-term partner to develop opportunities and drive value to the top men’s tier, Eredivisie. 

IJshockey Nederland, the Dutch national ice hockey federation, has agreed a five-year mandate with Spring Media starting from the 2024/25 season. The agreement is the agency’s first domestic rights project in the Netherlands following Spring Media’s acquisition of Amsterdam based sports rights agency Athletic Sports Group in 2022. 

The Eredivisie comprises twelve teams across the nation, battling through 22 regular season rounds from mid-September through February, to secure a playoff spot in March and get a chance to clinch the Championship trophy. 

League matches to date have been scattered on various platforms - or largely not produced at all. With the centralization of rights and production management, Spring Media intends to invest resources and build an infrastructure around the league to facilitate long-term growth.

“We are pleased to be working alongside Spring Media in setting and reaching our goals, and it starts with incorporating all verticals - technical infrastructure, production, OTT-streaming, rights management and data insights - under one holistic umbrella,” said Theo van Gerwen, CEO at IJshockey Nederland. “Dutch ice hockey is a fast-paced and historically significant team sport with deep local ties and great national potential. We want to offer our fans a more accessible product, and show everyone that there’s more to our thrilling season than the well-visited Cup final.”

Spring Media represents several ice hockey properties: namely Swedish second tier HockeyAllsvenskan and third tier HockeyEttan, French Ligue Magnus, and a partnership with Youth Sports Plus - using AI and streaming technologies to drive growth of grass-roots leagues in North America.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with IJshockey Nederland on this journey and believe that our industry knowledge and data-driven approach will help realize their objectives,” said Hans Svelander, CCO at Spring Media. “The keys to a successful and long-term value growth for any league is the ability to create a model where data collection, media management and a scalable production all work in harmony. We have successfully implemented such a model for other leagues, and will contribute with all the key services required to maximize the potential for the Eredivisie.”

While the current Eredivisie season enters the playoff stage, the 2024/25 campaign will commence in September. All Eredivisie matches will be produced, ranging from an AI baseline to multi-camera standard. The league will give broadcasters in the Netherlands and abroad the possibility to get involved exclusively or in combination with a dedicated league OTT hub. 

In 2023, Spring Media partnered with the European Para Championships, offering multi-sport production services, media rights distribution and content creation from several venues in Rotterdam. The group is also the acting production partner of Viaplay for the Hoofdklasse Hockey Nederland.

About Spring Media group
Spring Media is an international full-service sports agency that serves some of the biggest leagues, federations, teams and broadcasters in the world. Its business is built around four core areas including Rights Management, Production Services, Streaming Solutions and Growth Marketing. Spring Media group has more than a hundred employees and global reach with offices throughout the Nordics, Europe, the Americas, the Middle East and Asia. The group distributes, sells and produces more than 100 000 hours of live sports annually and works with over 500 broadcast partners. More info at: www.spring.media 

About IJshockey Nederland
IJshockey Nederland is the Dutch ice hockey Federation, founded in 1934, and responsible for the organization and development of all ice hockey in the Netherlands. IJshockey Nederland is official member of NOC*NSF (Netherlands Olympic Committee / Dutch Sports federation) and of the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF). More info at: www.ijshockeynederland.nl