Sky Television Launches Sky Arena

New Zealand cable broadcaster Sky Television is diversifying into sports and concert promotion. It has set up Sky Arena as a pay-per-view events company.

It will be run by Sky TV executive George McFarlane, John McRae, formerly with boxing promoter Ducol, and Mark Keddell, the one-time Olympian athlete turned boxing manager.

It plans to stream music and comedy gigs from Auckland’s 

Sky chief executive John Fellet told Stuff website that promotion had its risks but “We don’t take a risk unless we think we will get rewarded.”

Sky Arena will also stage local boxing and UFC cage fighting championship events, launching June 4 with the heavyweight Super Eight tournament with a NZ$500,000 ($414,070) purse.

New Zealanders like their sport “live and local,” Fellet said, pointing out that New Zealand events out-rated those beamed from overseas.