Digital media firms search for revenue in high-school bleachers

By Jessica Toonkel NEW YORK (Reuters) – Digital media companies looking for other sources of revenue growth are targeting high school sports licensing and content deals, hoping to tap into a surge in online viewing and crack a market too fragmented for most traditional networks. Online viewing offers new ways to reach a rabid fan base of the about 2.5 million scholastic events held each year, according to PlayOn! Sports. Digital platforms seeking to add or license high school sports content include Monumental Sports Network, a digital platform co-owned by Monumental Sports & Entertainment and NBC Sports, and Pluto TV, whose financial backers include German media giant ProSiebenSat.1, Scripps Networks Interactive and Sky Plc. Time Warner Inc’s’s Bleacher Report, is searching for ways to identify student athletes and teams with stories that can attract a nationwide audience.

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