DAZN Reportedly in Talks to Acquire International Sports Streamer Eleven Sports
In today’s tumultuous world of broadcasting, few things are as universally agreed upon as the importance of live sports rights. Be it traditional linear networks or streaming platforms, the ability to market live sports as part of a platform is incredibly valuable. To that end, one of streaming’s specifically sports-focused services is now looking to obtain even more rights around the world by acquiring a smaller competing service.
On Wednesday, the Financial Times reported that DAZN was currently in discussions to purchase fellow sports streamer Eleven Sports. As larger streaming services including Apple TV+, Amazon Prime Video, and even Netflix attempt to enter or expand their place in the world of sports broadcasting, DAZN is looking to strengthen its position by adding content and quickly expanding to more international markets by acquiring an established, but still fairly fledgling competitor.
Eleven Sports currently has the rights to broadcast Formula One racing in Poland as well as the UEFA Champions League and English Premier League in Portugal. In the United States, ESPN recently re-upped its F1 deal, while Paramount+ and Peacock own the Champions League and EPL streaming rights.
Additionally, Eleven also owns documentary company Neo studios, technology provider MyCujoo, and digital marketing firm Team Whistle. On its own, Team Whistle reportedly generated $300 million in revenue in the first six months of 2021.
DAZN already broadcasts a wide array of different sports, including multiple high-level soccer leagues from around the world like Spain’s La Liga, the German Bundesliga, and Italy’s Serie A. A recent study indicated that nearly three-quarters of customers who subscribe to a sports-focused streaming service are cord-cutters, so having a deep catalog of options to keep sports fans engaged is increasingly valuable in order to compete with the larger, more diverse options available to consumers.
Last year, DAZN had hoped to purchase British broadcaster BT Sport, which owns rights to the EPL and Champions League in the U.K., but was outbid by Discovery. Now part of Warner Bros. Discovery, the company has seen extensive international growth thanks to sports rights, including the Olympics, but has not begun to fully embrace sports streaming in the United States just yet, but could begin broadcasting men’s and women’s U.S. National Team soccer matches as part of Turner's new rights agreement.
The Financial Times’ Samuel Agini and Arash Massoudi describe the talks between DAZN and Eleven Sports as “advanced,” but caution that nothing has yet been finalized. In addition to increasing subscriptions with the purchase of Eleven, DAZN’s new CEO Shay Segev — who once ran international sports betting and gambling company Entain — is hoping to expand the streamer’s reach beyond just sports streaming and into sports betting and NFTs.
DAZN is a live sports subscription streaming service that offers 80+ fights a year from Matchroom USA, Bellator, Golden Boy Promotions, World Boxing Super Series, and Combate Americas. All plans include UEFA Women’s Champions League, darts, and documentaries.
For all fights, they include every match from the entire undercard through the main event.