Amazon to stream UFC PPVs

February 28, 2018

Amazon is picking up the rights to UFC PPVs according to a report from the Sports Business Journal.  Terms and length of the deal were not disclosed ahead of a formal announcement later this morning.  The company will stream UFC 222 this Saturday for a priced of $64.99 HD.

As with UFC.tv, the PPV will be available for purchasers for 24 hours on Amazon.

The UFC is shopping its media rights and the Amazon deal indicates it is willing to split its properties into digital and television.  The UFC’s current deal with Fox is reported to be $120 million per year and $160 million in the last year.  Fox has made an initial offer to the UFC for $200 million annually.  The UFC claimed to want $450 per year over 10 years.

The move reflects Amazon’s continued move into sports rights.  Last year, it obtained the right to stream NFL Thursday night games.  It also is bidding for Premier League streaming rights.

Payout Perspective:

Digital streaming rights is competitive as Amazon is competing with YouTube and Facebook for rights to digital events.  Obtaining rights to the UFC likely means the end to sales of its PPV on its own site (or at least a significant loss in sales).  With many people cutting the cord, streaming rights are becoming more valuable to a core audience.  Still, the key to the next UFC television deal will be finding a partner that will be willing to improve on Fox’s initial offer of $200 million.

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