Ratings Up On VERSUS For First Night of Stanley Cup Playoffs Among NHL Gains

NEW YORK (April 15, 2010) – The NHL continued its positive business momentum after a record 2009-10 season as the 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs launched with triple digit percentage increases in video starts and mobile consumption, and unique visitors and page views on NHL.com earning double digit percentage increases over last year, further validating the League’s digital strategy. The NHL on Versus is also off to a fast start with double digit ratings increases for the first day of the postseason.

DIGITIAL STRATEGY PAYS DIVIDENDS
The NHL continues to engage and connect with more fans than ever on its digital platforms and the start of the Stanley Cup Playoffs accelerated that trend. Some highlights:

-Video starts on NHL.com increased by 104 percent over the first day of the postseason in 2009
-Unique Visitors to NHL.com were up 10 percent over last year (1.12 mm to 1.01 mm)
-Page Views on NHL.com were also up 10 percent (7.83 mm to 7.15 mm)
-Mobile page views were up 168 percent

VERSUS UP 14 PERCENT
Versus’ coverage of the first day of the Stanley Cup Quarterfinals showed a 14 percent increase over last year, averaging a .39 overnight rating (.34 – 2009) for the two games (Ottawa-Pittsburgh & Detroit-Phoenix). Game 1 of the Ottawa-Pittsburgh matchup was up 16 percent over last year earning a .43 overnight compared to a .37 last season (Game 1, Philadelphia-Pittsburgh). The Detroit-Phoenix Game 1 also earned a 16 percent increase from last year generating a .37 compared to a .32 (Game 1, St. Louis-Vancouver).

INTERNATIONAL ENGAGEMENT INCREASES
The start of the 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs drove a record number of downloads of NHL Ice Time 2010, the League’s official app for the iPhone and iPod Touch that is distributed outside of North America.  It remains among the top-five sports apps sold on iTunes in 20 countries outside of North America

HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE NHL’S RECORD-BREAKING BUSINESS SUCCESS IN 2009-10
· Corporate sponsorship was up 20 percent
· New League partners this season include Geico, Starwood Hotels, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, LG Electronics and Hershey’s Canada
· Ad spending on NHL® media increased by 37 percent over last season
· Revenue from big event platforms, led by the Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic®, are up 22 percent over last season
· Unique visitors to NHL.com surpassed last year’s record by 32 percent
· NHL.com attracted a single-day record 1.6 million unique visitors on Sunday, April 11 – besting last season’s regular season final day by 54 percent
· NHL Game Center Live™ subscriptions were up 25 percent
· Sales at SHOP.NHL.com were up 12 percent from last year’s record
· Viewership for NBC’s Game of the Week telecasts were up 13 percent
· Ratings for exclusive telecasts on Versus were up 29 percent
· NHL Mobile™ reached 1.6 million page views, an increase of 233 percent over last season

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About stevelepore
Steve Lepore is the Managing Editor of Puck the Media. His work has been featured in The Hockey News. Feel free to contact him at stevemlepore@gmail.com

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