Ads have appeared in a select amount of out of home spots, carrying the strapline “Great sport happens here”. They feature some of the channels’ forthcoming brand ambassadors including Manchester United’s Robin van Persie, Tottenham Hotspur’s Gareth Bale and Manchester City’s Joe Hart.
In June BT paid £738m to acquire the rights for 38 Premier League football games each season for the next three years, including 18 of the coveted “first pick” matches.
It has also landed rights to broadcast live football matches from international leagues and tournaments, the Aviva Premiership rugby, a handful of Heineken Cup matches, Ultimate Fighting, MotoGP and top flight women’s tennis.
It is understood BT Sport will be exclusive to the company’s subscription television service, although it is likely to wholesale its content to other providers at a later date.
The telecoms company is set to officially unveil the BT Sport 1 and BT Sport 2 channels at a press event this Thursday (9 May) at the former Olympic Park where they will be based.
BT is currently preparing a major above the line advertising campaign starring a number of the aforementioned Premiership footballer ambassadors and also Arsenal’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Everton’s Marouane Fellaini and Liverpool’s Daniel Sturridge as well as a handful of rugby stars.
Last month BT complained to Ofcom about BSkyB’s refusal to air its TV ad campaign on the grounds its rival was showing “undue discrimination”. BSkyB responded with a letter to the press saying allowing BT Sport to advertise on Sky Sports would be like “Tesco being able to advertise inside Sainsbury’s”.