DAZN, Sky Sports Continue to Battle for Position in European Sports

Competition breeds a better experience for consumers. That’s good news for viewers, as DAZN and Sky Sports are each striking new deals in the European sports industry that will strengthen both of their positions.

Celtic Football Club
Celtic Football Club
Celtic Football Club players celebrate winning the Scottish Cup in 2020. The Scottish Professional Football team is one of several that will soon find itself in front of more fans thanks to an expanded partnership between Sky Sports and the league. (Image: SNS Group)

Sky Sports is going the route of additional content. It’s going to expand its coverage of the Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) and include additional content streams.

DAZN’s strategy is different, but the result will be similar. It is going to purchase a competitor, online soccer streaming company Eleven Group.

Sky Sports Adds New Soccer Coverage

Sky Sports will add more coverage of the SPFL than ever before, according to a company announcement. It will offer up to 60 matches each season, and is adding the Scottish Women’s Premier League (SWPL), as well. For the latter, Sky Sports will provide access to at least five contests each season.

Fans of Scottish soccer will have to wait to enjoy the additional coverage, though. The deal doesn’t kick in until the 2024 season.

However, they’ll begin to see Sky Sports branding sooner. As part of the deal, the broadcaster is now an official partner of the league, as well as the title sponsor of the SWPL League Cup. It will keep that title for the next seven seasons.

Sports fans aren’t happy unless they have round-the-clock access to their favorite teams. Therefore, Sky Sports is also going to expand its online SPFL and SWPL content. It will include interviews, live blog content, in-game clips, and more on its website and through apps.

Complementing the new partnership will be additional match coverage on Sky Sports’ media channels, including YouTube, Sky Q, and Sky Glass. There will also be a highlights show every week to summarize the best moves and goals of the leagues.

DAZN Looks for Domination

DAZN, which recently launched its own sportsbook in the UK, is in the process of finalizing its acquisition of Eleven Group. The company, founded by Leeds United Chairman Andrea Radrizzani seven years ago, offers soccer streaming online to a global audience. It brags of having provided more than “65,000 hours of live content” over the last year.

The acquisition will make DAZN the “largest holder of European sports rights,” according to its announcement. It said that it will add another 40K live events to its library once it completes the purchase.

The library will include Liga Portugal, as well as Jupiler Pro League out of Belgium. DAZN expects it to add around $300 million to its revenue each year.

As part of the acquisition, DAZN also picks up Team Whistle, the Eleven subsidiary that specializes in social media. It reportedly has over 700 million followers and generates approximately five billion views a year.

Both the Sky Sports and DAZN deals come only months after BT Sport and Warner Bros. Discovery joined forces to offer sports coverage in the UK. Regulators still have to approve DAZN’s acquisition, but if they’re willing to sign off on that mega-deal, there’s no reason to think they’ll reject it.

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