Netflix plans to invest in broadcasting live sports events, but the rights are expensive and the streaming platform does not want to lose money.
Building on the success of sports series like Formula 1 that have attracted hundreds of millions of hours of viewing, Netflix wants to go further and dig its groove in sports by streaming live sports events. The goal is also to catch up with Amazon and Apple, which are already present on the market.
The platform continues to bet on Formula 1, but its latest efforts have failed: Earlier this year, Netflix made a bid for the US rights to live Formula 1, but lost out to Disney.
According to The Wall Street Journal, the streaming platform recently made a bid for the rights to broadcast the ATP tennis circuit in certain European countries, including France, but that bid also fell through. It is a question of the high price of broadcasting rights. The company then turned to less prestigious competitions, mainly in tennis and surfing.
Face the congruence
Netflix’s potential entry into sports comes as rivals have spent huge sums on broadcast rights. Amazon pays the National Football League (NFL) $1.2 billion a year for Thursday Night Football rights and has signed an 11-year deal. For its part, Apple exclusively broadcasts certain Major League Baseball games for a 10-year deal worth $2.5 billion.
To face its competitors, Netflix relies on its subscribers, namely 223 million people worldwide. Sport remains a means of attracting new applicants. Meanwhile, Netflix continues to build its catalog of sports documentaries with series like “Last Chance U” or “The Redeem Team.” The streaming service also plans to release a new Tour de France documentary series that should be filmed this year.