Five out of seven Premier League streaming rights have been sold to Sky Sports and BT Sport. After paying £3.579 billion, Sky Sports are now eligible to stream 128 Premier League games, while BT Sport only has rights to 32 games.
Even though there are still 2 tranches left to be sold, this year’s Premier League’s deal is expected to much expensive than last year’s £5.14 billion deal.
Upon purchasing the rights, Sky executive chairman, Richard Scudamore said, “To have achieved this investment with two packages remaining to sell is a testament to the excellent football competition delivered by the clubs.”
After paying £3.579 billion, Sky Sports audiences will now have the chance to enjoy every weekend match as well as Saturday night fixtures.
What does this deal mean?
This time, the bidding process comprised 200 live Premier League matches a season. All of them are spread into 7 different fixtures, which broadcasters have to bid. Five fixtures contain 32 matches per season, while the other two only have 20 matches.
However, there are also some changes made to this year’s bidding process. They include 8 live individual games available only in an exclusive Saturday night slot, 3 rounds of live 10-midweek matches, and 1 set of the usual bank holiday games.
What about the remaining 2 packages?
Most likely, the bidding process will continue to find the owner of the last 2 tranches. BT Sports is reported to be on a discussion about getting their hands on the deal. However, the broadcasting company may have to compete with Netflix, Facebook, Amazon, and even Twitter to finally win the right.
Many people believe that one of these US tech giants would enter the bidding process. Amazon, for example, has shown great interest in purchasing sports streaming rights. They are on the way purchasing other TV rights after winning UK rights for ATP Tour tennis rights and US Open tennis rights.
Facebook, at the other hand, will not back easily. The company is reported to have interest in ICC’s Champions Tropcy cricket matches in June. They are also in discussion with UEFA to stream the Champions League games in the future.
We still do not have information from Netflix or Twitter about this issue. However, learning the fact that both Amazon and Facebook are on their way, at least Netflix will not stand idle. With millions of loyal customers, Netflix can easily make money once they have purchased the rights to these Premier League streaming rights. The only question is, how far would the company willing to take? Will take they both tranches or just one of them?