5x NBA All-Star Joins the Collective of 30+ PlayersTV Iconic Athlete Owners

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PlayersTV surpasses 120+MM households and devices through new distribution agreements with Roku and Philo TV

PlayersTV, the athlete-owned media network dedicated to Athlete-Sports lifestyle and culture entertainment, revealed the network has surpassed access by 120+mm households and devices in 2020 with new distribution agreements announced today with The Roku Channel, the home of free and premium TV on the Roku® platform, and Philo TV, a popular entertainment and lifestyle streaming TV service. Closing out an incredibly successful year, 5x NBA All-Star DAMIAN LILLARD becomes the newest athlete investor and partner in the growing network and will release his documentary series entitled “Dame” and Original Show Series, “Sessions” connecting aspiring musical talent including athletes with notable musicians on PlayersTV in 2021. With the addition of The Roku Channel and Philo TV, PlayersTV exceeds their year-end distribution goal since its initial launch on March 25, 2020.

Lillard, an accomplished multi hyphenate (musician, philanthropist, entrepreneur and basketball star), joins the collective of PlayersTV superstars who have propelled the successful network. “I’m excited to join this impressive group of investors and distribution partners. PlayersTV brings a fresh approach to programming and I look forward to sharing my exclusive content in 2021,” said Lillard.

In 2020, Players Media Group (PMG), a leading sports-centric new media company, was formed. Two weeks after the World Health Organization declared a global pandemic, PMG launched its first subsidiary, PlayersTV despite the potential collateral business slowdowns that would soon hit many media companies and corporations. With the support of their first distributor, Samsung TV Plus and the PMG team of media industry experts with a combined 70+ years of digital, broadcast, and streaming experience, PlayersTV was able to deliver much needed valued entertainment in the form of comedies and documentaries, reality shows and podcasts, all centered on sports, culture, and lifestyle. With consistent onboarding of new partnerships, PlayersTV continues to offer unparalleled athlete-led content and distribution through an inside look at athlete’s passions, interests, and off-the-field pursuits. PlayersTV has become a magnet for the world’s top professional athletes to own a majority stake where they can control their narrative, monetize their intellectual property, own an equitable stake, and create exclusive content for PlayersTV and their leading distribution partners.

PlayersTV hit multiple milestones and press-worthy moments in 2020 from announcing distribution partnerships with SAMSUNG, REACHTV, SLING TV, LG CHANNELS, VIZIO SMARTCAST and XUMO TV (all devices) to announcing multiple pro athletes as new investors and partners such as the NFL’s TRAVIS KELCE, the NBA’s KYRIE IRVING and MLB greats KEN GRIFFEY JR. and TREVOR BAUER to debuting original programming such as Irving’s star-studded TV special “SAYHERNAME: Breonna Taylor'' to CJ MCCOLLUM’S ground-breaking “ReMaking America'' with first guests Presidential VP-elect KAMALA HARRIS and NBA stars TOBIAS HARRIS & DONOVAN MITCHELL, to NBA star DEANDRE JORDAN’s “A Mindful Life”. Through the athlete collective’s 300mm+ social media reach, PlayersTV is frequently promoted, providing a win-win for PMG and its distribution partners.

The distribution partnership with Roku offers access to millions of engaged users. Roku continues to be the #1 TV streaming platform in the U.S. by hours streamed (Kantar, November 2020). As the home for both free and premium entertainment on the Roku platform, The Roku Channel delivers thousands of titles, including free movies and TV episodes. The Roku platform reached U.S. households with an estimated 54 million people as of Q3 2020.

Philo will add a dedicated PlayersTV channel by mid-2021 to Philo’s programming line-up that includes popular networks such as A&E, AMC, BET, CLEO TV, Comedy Central, HGTV, ID, Lifetime, MTV, Nickelodeon, OWN, ASPIRE, Vh1 and Revolt. Customers can access PlayersTV on Philo TV from wherever they are in the U.S. on most web, mobile and TV streaming devices, including Apple TV, FireTV and the Roku platform.

On December 21st, PMG announced its second business vertical, ProClass, a virtual sports training platform that provides users an individualized experience to get feedback, skills, and training from the world’s best pro athletes. More than 25 pro athletes have joined ProClass, with the initial launch of ProClass Basketball on January 1 featuring Lillard, 10x NBA All-Star CHRIS PAUL and fellow NBA star TYLER HERRO, NBA HALL OF FAMER ALLEN IVERSON, and WNBA stars TE’A COOPER, AERIAL POWERS and 5x WNBA All-Star ANGEL MCCOUGHTRY, with more sport verticals to be announced in 2021. Like PlayersTV, ProClass offers athletes the opportunity to monetize their IP and produce exclusive content on a global platform.

PMG CEO Nancy Pingitore said, “We managed to launch an unparalleled Company and subsidiaries in the most extraordinary conditions. As a result, we’ve experienced a groundswell of confidence from our athlete owners, our distributors, and our content partners which of course propels us to build and introduce new compelling athlete centric services for the sports and lifestyle fans. The entire PMG team should feel very proud for what they’ve achieved in 2020 and for what’s ahead.”

PMG Co-Founder and seasoned entertainment executive Deron Guidrey oversees all athlete relations and marketing, and Co-Founder Collin Castellaw is head of content and production as well as the new President of ProClass, alongside CEO Adam Linkenauger. Guidrey says PlayersTV and Pro Class beat their expectations to recruit the world’s best athletes across multiple sports and says the best is yet to come. “In 2021, PMG will expand its offerings with additional business verticals to provide world-class sports, lifestyle and culture entertainment to sports fans around the globe,” said Guidrey.

ABOUT PLAYERSTV

Co-founded by entertainment executives Deron Guidrey and Collin Castellaw, and led by former Tennis Channel Executive Nancy Pingitore, PlayersTV launched on March 25, 2020. PlayersTV is an athlete majority-owned group of 30+ elite athletes including NBA superstars Damian Lillard, De’Aaron Fox, Chris Paul, Kyrie Irving, Carmelo Anthony, C.J. McCollum, Anthony Tolliver, MLB Hall of Famer Ken Griffey Jr, All-Star and Cy Young Award winning pitcher Trevor Bauer and NFL greats Will Allen, Travis Kelce and Vernon Davis among others, all of whom have a financial stake and creative control of their individual production companies. Anthem Sports & Entertainment, a global media company that owns AXS TV and other sports and entertainment properties, is also an investor and strategic partner. PlayersTV is available on Samsung, SLING TV, LG Channels, Vizio Smartcast, Xumo TV, the Roku platform and Philo TV (all devices), reaching more than 120+mm households and devices. Visit us at http://www.playerstv.co, and Instagram @theplayerstv.

ABOUT PHILO

Inspired by Philo T. Farnsworth, the inventor of electronic television, Philo was created to build a better TV experience. The company started in the college market and is now available nationwide, offering 60+ top-rated television channels for just $20 per month. Philo customers can also purchase premium add-on channels, EPIX and STARZ. In addition to being the first entertainment-focused streaming TV device, Philo offers live TV, unlimited DVR, on-demand, and content from top programmers all available on Android devices, GoogleTV, Fire tablets and Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, iOS/iPad, Roku, and PC/Mac web browsers and now Chromecast with Android functionality. Philo is based in San Francisco, with offices in New York and Cambridge, MA. For more information, visit http://www.philo.com.

Roku is a registered trademark of Roku, Inc. in the U.S. and in other countries. Trade names, trademarks and service marks of other companies appearing in this press release are the property of their respective holders.

MEDIA CONTACT

Kristi Roehm (Players TV), 8 Degrees LLC, kristi@8degreespr.com

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Ariel Shnerer
Anthem Sports & Entertainment
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