Facebook secures Premier League rights in Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos

The move is an example of how digital platforms are increasingly competing with traditional pay-TV to offer premium sports content on the go. It is Facebook’s most high-profile sports streaming deal to date, having previously owned the rights to Major League Baseball (MLB) games and World Surf League (WSL) competitions, according to Business Insider.

Selling streaming rights to digital platforms like Facebook can help Premier League maximise viewership as consumers are increasingly moving away from traditional pay-TV and watching their sports content online. According to Business Insider, UK pay-TV broadcasters BT and SKY paid a combined £5.1 billion for the TV rights for three Premier League seasons in 2015. However, both broadcasters experienced a decrease in viewership and subscriptions with SKY seeing average viewing for their live TV channels fall 14 percent during the 2016-2017 season.

Facebook is not the only online service that is betting on the sporting game so to speak. Earlier this year, Amazon gained the rights to show 20 live Premier League matches per season during 2019-2022 through its online streaming service Amazon Prime. And, according to the Daily Mail, Premier League was in talks with both YouTube and Netflix to stream its games in other parts of the world.

“As average time spent online increases, the deals by Facebook and Amazon are indicative of the way in which mass media is changing and it shows Facebook’s ambitions beyond a purely social network,” commented Paul Poole, Founder, Managing Director and Chaiman of Paul Poole (South East Asia) Co., Ltd. “In addition, the deal is likely to enable the network to explore new forms of advertising and user acquisition, as well as bolster relevance and clout in a time when it has faced several criticisms of its increasingly commercial content and handling of personal data.”

Paul Poole (South East Asia) Co., Ltd. is an independent marketing consultancy based in Bangkok, Thailand specialising in commercial sponsorship and partnership marketing, working with both rights holders and brands - acting as a catalyst by bringing them together and maximising the relationship.

We have packaged, sold and managed sponsorship and partnership opportunities for a wide range of rights holders and worked with many of the world’s leading brands to source and engage the right sponsorships and partnerships for them to maximise.

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