NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Over two million initial network subscribers and one record-setting basketball shot greeted the new year in celebration of the launch of The Whistle Network (TWN) – a first of its kind multi-channel YouTube sports network built to engage and activate the new generation of fans and athletes.
The network launched with a dozen channel partners, led by independent sports media sensations Dude Perfect, who nailed a 570 foot basket from the top of Dallas’ iconic Reunion Tower to kick off the partnership.
The Whistle Network is the YouTube-focused platform of the sports media company The Whistle, whose nine professional league content and equity partners include the PGA Tour, NASCAR, Major League Lacrosse, US Ski and Snowboard Association, US Soccer, the Harlem Globetrotters, Alli Sports, and several other major sports leagues to be announced shortly.
“Today’s new generation of sports fans demanded a new media experience focused on them. We’re answering, building a new type of sports network from scratch with our pro league partners, all-star content creators and notable athlete investors,” said Whistle CEO and founder John West, who has previously started, grown and sold multiple companies. “Whether offering insider access to top pro athletes or highlighting the best in backyard sports, The Whistle is growing to deliver sports content for younger fans on any screen at any time.”
The Whistle’s All-Star Partners
All-star athletes Peyton Manning, Derek Jeter and Mia Hamm have been involved in The Whistle since its founding.
"I believe in The Whistle's mission of inspiring young fans with what's best in sports and their focus on the values that drive success on and off the field. The content is great and it's clear that they're growing quickly," Manning said.
"The Whistle's got the right team, the right partners and the right goals. They're building the first sports network that celebrates athletic success in every arena, from professionals on the field to incredible young athletes in their own backyards. The YouTube announcement means there are millions more fans to connect with The Whistle on multiple platforms," Hamm said.
At the end of the video of their successful 570-foot basket in Dallas, independent sports media sensations Dude Perfect announced their decision to partner with and help launch The Whistle Network. Within hours of the video going live, 800 new prospective channel partners had already signed up for consideration through TheWhistleNetwork.Com
“If you know anything about Dude Perfect, you know how competitive we are. Because of that, we don't take a decision like this lightly. After five years in the sports space, we knew what we were looking for, and we found it in The Whistle. Not only does The Whistle have a vast understanding of the sports industry, but they perfectly fit our ‘Go Big’ philosophy. Further, the team has super solid YouTube knowledge and shares our vision to help grow sports content creators on YouTube, as well as on other emerging content platforms," said Dude Perfect. “The Whistle is bringing together the world’s largest professional sports leagues, athletes, brands, and some of the greatest content creators on all of YouTube. Honestly it's a ridiculously big opportunity. We're all in. Let's do this."
Focus on Scaling Audience and Serving Content Creators
The Whistle Network is growing from 14 channels and two million subscribers at launch to several thousand sports-focused content creator’s channels across the world by offering content providers a set of services, unique audience insight and development tools, studio space and production facilities in New York and Dallas, and the creation of sports-specific community tools to help partners grow their digital presence.
“We looked across the existing spectrum of options for content creators who wanted to engage a broader audience and saw that the large-scale leveraging that had been happening in areas like gaming, music, food and other fields had to yet to happen in sports. TWN gives compelling sports content creators the chance to grow across all media platforms with the help of The Whistle’s tools, resources, and insider access to the sports community,” said the Whistle’s head of content partnerships Julie Kikla.
The launch of The Whistle Network continues The Whistle's ongoing multi-platform roll-out to meet the new generation of sports fans on every platform where they spend their time, including mobile/web app releases, an expanded social media presence, a Microsoft XBox Live video channel and application currently in development and an expanded presence on additional digital platforms.
The Whistle’s team includes decades of sports, digital and community building experience. Company co-founder and CMO Jeff Urban served as the Senior Vice President, Sports & Event Marketing at Gatorade. Kikla was a founding member of the YouTube Sports Business Development team and led education initiatives for the Global Sports Team such as writing the sports playbook on how to be successful on the YouTube platform. Dev Sethi was a Senior Strategist of the YouTube Online Acquisitions team and helped set up the initial NHL franchise engagement and spearheaded the creation of the YouTube Partner Program’s first video education series. Whistle EVP Brian Selander has worked with public officials at the state and federal level to strengthen communities and Content Head Brian Diamond was the Senior Vice President of Sports and Specials with Spike TV.
About The Whistle -
The Whistle is the first sports entertainment network built across multiple platforms to engage and activate the new generation of fans and athletes. Its owners and investors include sports heroes such as Derek Jeter, Peyton Manning, and Tim Wakefield, media pioneers including the former heads of Nickelodeon and MTV, and league equity and content partners like the NFL, PGA Tour, NASCAR, Major League Lacrosse, US Ski and Snowboard Association, US Soccer, the Harlem Globetrotters and Alli Sports, who each deliver Whistle fans inside access to professional sports. The Whistle Network (TWN) is the company’s YouTube-based Multi-Channel Network (MCN), which launched with over two million subscribers and provides sports content creators tools, services and expertise to grow while connecting with The Whistle’s audience on multiple platforms. A team of judges that included the Angel Capital Association, Dell Founders Club, NAB Show, National Venture Capital Association, Startup America Partnership, The Paley Center and Springboard Enterprises named The Whistle one of the most “revolutionary” market-ready start-ups in the country.