Streaming and the future of sports – Why companies are betting big on broadcast rights

The NFL is now on Amazon and Peacock, Major League Baseball streams games exclusively on Apple TV, and now the WWE is heading to Netflix. Streaming giants are shelling out big bucks for live sporting events – so what does this imply for the future of sports television? TheStreet’s Colin Salao breaks down why there has been such a shift from traditional cable to streaming in the world of sports.

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Full Video Transcript Below:

J.D. DURKIN: On the heels of the massive news between the WWE and Netflix, Colin, walk us through some of the other partnerships between streaming services and leagues?

COLIN SALAO: Of course, Netflix has now entered the market. They are in live sports entertainment. But a lot of other players have been in this for a while now. Amazon and Apple as some Peacock. Even so, a couple of years ago, NFL agreed to a deal with five different broadcast Partners. 11 years, 110 billion, one of them being Amazon, who are paying dollar, billion a year for Thursday Night Football and BC is also one of those partners. And as we saw during the wild card game a few weeks ago, they paid $100 million to exclusively air that match-up between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Miami Dolphins. For Apple TV on the other hand, they are in the game with Major League Baseball paying $85 million per year to air and MLB games on Fridays, and they paid $2.5 billion for a 10 year deal with Major League soccer, which has been great for them through its first season due to the arrival of Lionel Messi. 

J.D. DURKIN: What exactly is driving the move from traditional cable to streaming services?

COLIN SALAO: I mean, just like with anything in business, it’s really the dollars. It’s really money. We’ve seen media change. Social media has come in. People are consuming content differently. And for a while it was Netflix and Amazon and these streaming services were doing, you know, regular television shows and movies. And when they recognized sports as something that was keeping people on linear television, they went ahead and got it. 

And a lot of these tech companies like Amazon and Apple, they have deeper pockets than your Disney’s or your Netflix’s. So they’re willing to spend more money to bring people into these media services that they have and drive them towards their more high profit margin properties and products like your iPhones or, you know, other Amazon products. So they’re bringing in that money. They’re seeing where the money is going. They’re seeing where content is being consumed and they’re investing. And that’s why you’re really seeing a lot of movement towards streaming. 

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