The recent announcement of the Premier League selling its UK broadcast rights for a staggering £6.7 billion has sent ripples through the sports and business world.
The Premier League, Europe’s most lucrative sports franchise, has cemented its position by selling four years of UK broadcast rights mostly to Sky Sports and TNT Sports. This deal, a 4% increase from the previous cycle, showcases the ever-growing value of sports media rights. The latest Brand Finance research found that football is followed by 45% of the population of the UK, well ahead of tennis in 2nd (22%) and Formula 1 in 3rd (20%).
Hugo Hensley, Head of Sports Services at Brand Finance, commented on this monumental deal, highlighting its profound impact on sports and business brands globally:
“Brand Finance’s football fan research shows that the English Premier League is also the most popular competition behind the national top tier in Spain, Germany, France, Italy, China, Brazil and the USA. This deal signifies the Premier League’s dominance in the sports world and demonstrates the value of powerful brands in sport.”
“This deal is a testament to the appeal of live sports as a key driver for brand growth and consumer engagement. It’s a clear signal to brands and businesses of the value of associating with top-tier sports properties since the greater TV coverage included in this deal will likely lead to higher brand awareness for sponsors.”
Comcast Corp’s Sky secured rights for at least 215 live matches, while TNT Sports acquired rights to 52 matches, including the coveted Saturday afternoon games. The absence of Amazon.com and other online streaming services from the winning bid underscores the competitive and selective nature of sports media rights acquisition.
The Premier League has managed to increase the number of games available significantly, a move that has been hailed as a strategic win for the league and its partners. The deal will help to reinforce Sky’s brand position as the premier destination for sports fans in the UK.
This record deal comes at a time when the market for premium sports rights in Europe faces challenges, with deals in Italy and France not reaching similar heights. Live sports remains a signature audience attraction at a time of atomised audiences, and enables advertisers to build mass brands through association with marquee events like the UK Premier League.
In conclusion, Hensley said:
“The landscape of sports broadcasting is evolving, and this deal is a harbinger of the dynamic interplay between sports franchises and business brands. It’s an exciting time for those involved in sports marketing and brand strategy.”