The Press

Cricket stars unite to sell video secrets


A new video platform will soon give sports fans an insight into top players’ homes, personalit­ies and playing secrets.

A group of New Zealand cricketers have created Behind The Seams TV, a subscripti­on video platform where some of the world’s best cricket players and coaches reveal honest renditions of their careers in interviews.

Cricket-scoring software company CricHQ’s former executive chairman, Mike Loftus, is leading the venture, which aims to step on the toes of broadcast sports media and reach 500 million online cricket fans.

It would cost fans US$1.99 a month to watch the weekly-release videos. When more were published, subscriber­s could pay a premium for exclusive footage.

Former internatio­nal cricketers turned commentato­rs Scott Styris and Simon Doull, as well as Black Cap fast bowler Mitchell McClenagha­n, will host the interviews around the world.

In the interviews they ask players to reveal their secret bowling and batting techniques, their career highlights and failures and stories of sledging.

Loftus said there was an internatio­nal desire for videos of sports stars.

‘‘You are already seeing subscripti­on models for ESPN and Sky Sport dropping away substantia­lly at the moment.’’

It has hired a team of marketers in India to help grow its presence in the cricket-mad country.

It plans to launch with five interviews in mid-August, but needs almost half a million dollars to get the word out.

To do so it will open a public campaign on Equitise to find the extra $450,000, offering up 30 per cent of the business’s equity to be bought. If it did not raise the money, Loftus said it would still have enough funding to launch this year.

Indian cricketer Rohit Sharma, Australian cricketer Glenn Maxwell and 1980s Black Cap Richard Hadlee are among the subjects of 10- to 25-minute interviews ready be published.

McClenagha­n said convincing his friends from the game to be interviewe­d would be easy.

But players also had a financial incentive to feature on the site. They would be paid 10 cents for every subscriber that watched their interview.

Styris interviewe­d McClenagha­n for the site earlier this year and had him reveal the reason he strived for a career in sport.

McClenagha­n said that his hatred towards naysayers fuelled his ambition to become an internatio­nal profession­al cricketer.

He said he felt so relieved after the interview that he decided to waive his royalty rights and invested $40,000 of his own money into the venture for a 5 per cent stake. McClenagha­n said he hoped the interviews would inspire hopeful athletes living in India’s slums.

‘‘Cricket is the reason people in India get up in the morning.’’

If successful, he said it could extend to other sports and possibly even Bollywood stars.

Behind The Seams would make money from subscripti­on fees and sponsors paying to advertise on the platform.

It is aiming to have 100,000 subscriber­s worldwide and to turn over $350,000 by December this year.

 ??  ?? Black Cap Mitchell McClenagha­n has $40,000 invested in the platform.
Black Cap Mitchell McClenagha­n has $40,000 invested in the platform.

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