NEW YORK – Cisco and the National Basketball Association (NBA) today announced a new multiyear extension of their marketing partnership, which began in 2007. Cisco will continue its role as the Official Technology Partner of the NBA, Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA), NBA Development League (NBA D-League), and USA Basketball.
In the past seven years, the NBA has experienced tremendous growth in the consumption of digital media with the help of Cisco’s infrastructure, which allows the league to bring data and video from the court to fans around the world in real time.
Innovation is at the core of the extension, embodied by a research and development initiative designed to identify ways to use leading-edge Cisco products and solutions to enhance the NBA game. A first for the Cisco and NBA partnership, this initiative will feature a committee of executives from both companies who will focus on employing principles of the Internet of Everything to enhance courtside connectivity within NBA venues.
Additionally, having made a lasting commitment to invest in the IT infrastructure for the businesses and citizens of the region, Cisco will extend its partnership to Brazil, beginning with NBA Global Games Rio 2014, featuring a preseason game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Miami Heat at HSBC Arena on Oct. 11. The contest will mark the NBA’s second game ever in South America. While in Rio, Cisco will join the league in refurbishing a local playground with two new courts in Palaphita Kitch, creating a place where kids and families can play.
Building on years of connecting NBA players with media via Cisco TelePresence, Cisco will take advantage of its state-of-the-art video collaboration solutions to bring together NBA players and sports media in Rio and nearby Sao Paolo for face-to-face interviews to help promote NBA Global Games Rio 2014.
“Today’s partnership extension reflects our mutual and ongoing commitment to bringing innovation to the NBA and the game of basketball through the Internet of Everything,” said Blair Christie, Cisco SVP and Chief Marketing Officer. “Together we are enabling new fan experiences and, with our new research and development initiative, will see the amazing things that can happen when we connect the unconnected. We also look forward to extending our relationship into Brazil and impacting that country in new ways by bringing their sport and fan experiences to a new level.”
“Cisco has consistently incorporated innovative technology solutions into our partnership, from enabling connections with our fans to transforming collaboration among our employees,” said NBA Executive Vice President, Global Marketing Partnerships Emilio Collins. “As we continue to look at growing the game experience and the ways in which it can be presented and consumed, we know that Cisco will play a vital leadership role with us.”
Cisco will have a larger role in the WNBA’s Inspiring Women platform, including the creation of a new Cisco WNBA Inspiring the Future Award. The annual award recognizes an exceptional female leader for her outstanding efforts in the field of technology education.
Cisco will continue its commitment to the NBA D-League as presenting partner of the NBA D-League Draft. For the fourth straight year, the NBA D-League will conduct its draft entirely through Cisco WebEx online collaboration software, with all teams able to participate remotely from their computers, tablets or smartphones no matter where they are.
The technology provider will also continue its support of several other NBA events including NBA All-Star. During NBA All-Star, Cisco will introduce new technology integrations and will participate at the annual NBA All-Star Technology Summit.
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