Amazon continues to build sports offering with new EPL deal

Josh McDonnell
By Josh McDonnell | 8 June 2018

Amazon Prime Video has secured the rights to broadcast The English Premier League (EPL) for the first time in the UK.

The package includes the right to broadcast 20 matches per season from one bank holiday and one-midweek fixture, with the rest of the games split out across Sky Sports and BT Sports. 

Amazon's move serves to highlight the e-commerce giant's ambition to take a bigger slice of the multibillion-dollar live sports rights market, which traditionally has held strong ground on free to air and pay TV.

However, this is not the first move Amazon has made in the sports streaming space. Last year the company's online gaming streaming service, Twitch, secured the rights to broadcast the NFL's Thursday Night Football games.

The new Amazon deal follows the conclusion of the sales process for all the EPL's live broadcasting rights in the UK and Ireland for the three seasons 2019/20 to 2021/22. In the UK, the rights consist of 200 live matches per season split into seven packages.

Most recently in Australia, current EPL broadcaster Optus extended the rights to show the league for another three seasons.

The initial move from Fox Sports to Optus in November 2015 sent shockwaves through adland with Fox Sports telling AdNews at the time it was left “disappointed” after “strong and realistic” bid. It was thought Optus EPL talks with Fox Sports 'broke down' after the pay TV provider felt it wasn't worth the extra cost of splitting its signal to bring the likes of Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal into the lucrative live venue market.

Optus paid $187 million over three years for the current rights deal and it is unclear how much they have paid for the renewal.

Optus' new deal begins in August 2019 and includes exclusive live coverage on for every Premier League match, and full on-demand, replay and short form rights for all 380 matches between 2019 to 2022.

Optus CEO Allen Lew said at the time the telco was delighted to secure the deal, which it has used to help drive new subscriptions for Optus post-paid mobile phone contracts and broadband.

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