This week we are zooming in on sports and its power to attract large audiences and loyal subscribers. The premium sports market is highly competitive. Several major rights in the Nordics have recently changed owners and women’s sports are on the rise.
In March 2017 it was announced that Discovery had secured the exclusive rights to the Swedish top football leagues Allsvenskan and Superettan. Discovery holds the rights through the 2020 – 2025 seasons. Prior to Discovery securing the rights, Allsvenskan and Superettan have resided with C More for over 20 years. C More (Canal+) has broadcasted Allsvenskan since 1997, previously under the name Canal+. Yet, as this season draws to a close in the coming months, Discovery prepares to take over these attractive rights as of the 2020 season.
As revealed in Mediavision’s recently published Nordic sports analysis, football holds a particularly strong position on the Nordic market with several leagues attaining a high share of paying viewers. For instance, roughly a third of consumers who express an interest in Swedish top football league Allsvenskan pays for access.
In other sports related news, C More has recently secured several new rights. The most recent being the 2019/2020 seasons of SDHL (Svenska Damhockeyligan). Prior to that, C More bolstered its sports offering by acquiring Strive Sports´ Swedish rights to La Liga, Serie A and Major League Soccer.
The strength of this customer segment is recognized and acted upon in other Nordic countries as well. In January 2020, Danish broadcaster TV2 is set to launch an entirely new streaming channel, TV2 Sports X. Moreover, Danish channel Xee has acquired the rights to air selected games from the German Bundesliga. In Norway, public service broadcaster NRK has bought the rights to air the UEFA Women’s Euro playoffs in 2021. Last but not least, NENT Group has acquired the Nordic broadcasting rights to several top European women’s football leagues such as Division 1 Féminine and FA Women’s Super League.
Perhaps the most notable trend in the most recent wave of rights being acquired is that women’s sports are gaining popularity and are riding a high following this summer’s football world cup, also outside of the Nordics. For instance, the BBC has significantly increased its share of women’s sports in the past five years, ESPN recently attained its highest ratings ever for US Open Women’s tennis and the Amazon-owned streaming platform Twitch will exclusively stream the National Women’s Hockey League this fall. The premium sports market remains highly competitive and we’re not likely to see a downturn anytime soon.
Popular titles of great importance to SVOD services
Streaming services have become very popular in Sweden. Naturally, one of the reasons is the vast supply on offer. But its not just a question of volume.
*Events where Mediavision will be presenting