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Peacock Chairman Says Tokyo Olympics Will Be ‘Meaningful Driver’ For The Service

Aubrey Meister

In a recent interview, Matt Strauss, chairman of Peacock, predicted that the Tokyo Olympics will be a “meaningful driver” of growth for the streaming service.

Dan Ives, an analyst at Wedbush Securities, predicts that Peacock could see a 30% increase in its user base with the help of the Olympics.

“I view it as a watershed event for Peacock,” he said.

Peacock will begin hosting coverage of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics on July 15 — several days before the Opening Ceremonies themselves take place.

The streaming service already promises an impressive lineup of content, including coverage of gymnastics, track & field, and US men’s basketball. You will also be able to watch original content, daily live shows, and replays.

The streaming service has plans outside of the Olympics as well. Strauss spoke about the service’s growth in a recent interview. Reflecting on Peacock’s first year, Strauss said, “I feel like we’re in a much better place with the service.” Going into year two, the company wants to find more ways to bring in subscribers and keep them coming back. “Right now our focus has been more on scale, but one thing we do well as a company is upsell people,” Strauss said. “That is an opportunity for us in the future.”

Peacock

Peacock is a subscription video streaming service from NBCUniversal that gives access to up to 15,000 hours of content including original shows, blockbuster movies, and classic television series.

It will include news, entertainment, sports, late-night, and reality from various NBCU properties including NBC, Bravo, and E!.

Just like other streaming services, Peacock will have their own original series including reboots of Save By The Bell, Punky Brewster, and Battlestar Galactica. They also have shows like Rutherford Falls (Ed Helms), Dr. Death (Alec Baldwin), and a behind-the-scenes docs-series about Saturday Night Live.

The company has acquired the rights to many classic shows like the entire Dick Wolf library including Law & Order and Chicago Fire, Parks and Recreation, and The Office.

The service will also feature blockbusters and critically-acclaimed films from Universal Pictures, Focus Features, DreamWorks Animation, Illumination and content acquired from Hollywood’s biggest studios.

Brian Roberts, Comcast Chief Executive Officer, plays a major role in decisions at Peacock. Mark Lazarus, chairman of NBCUniversal Television and Streaming, said Roberts is a part of the streaming service’s strategy meetings “to talk about what we should be doing differently.” NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Shell shares a similar role and stated that Peacock isn’t a separate business. He said, “It is a complementary back end to a lot of our businesses.”

Going forward, Peacock is looking to offer more of what its viewers want to see. For example, Strauss said that Below Deck Mediterranean will air on Peacock a week before it airs on Bravo. 60 new original series are also airing on the platform, further expanding its offerings and drawing in new subscribers.

“We’re doubling down on investing in content that our consumers like,” Lazarus said. The Olympics are one way for Peacock to determine which type of content to offer going forward. Both the Super Bowl and the Winter Olympics are predicted to give the company a boost.

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