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SME#40 - Where to Watch The Rugby World Cup France 2023
Top TV & Streaming choices for the 🏉 fans
Welcome back to Streaming Made Easy. I’m Marion & this is your weekly European take on the Global Streaming Video Business.
Every Friday, you get 1 analysis, 1 streamer snapshot & 1 content recommendation (→ previous editions).
Enjoy today’s read and don’t forget to comment or share.
Today at a glance:
Overview: It’s go time for the Rugby World Cup France 2023!
Show of the week: “Le Stade” by Paramount+
It’s go time for the Rugby World Cup France 2023!
The perfect opportunity to look at the viewing options offered to rugby fans.
Is rugby Broadcast TV driven or did it make its mutation towards OTT? What cool initiatives are lined up for us?
On the coach’s board today:
The Rugby World Cup in facts and numbers
The RWC Broadcasters
OTT & Rugby
Kick off time.
The World Cup in facts and numbers
Duration: Sept. 8th - Oct. 28th
Host country: France
Stadiums: 20 across the country
Teams: 20 split in 4 groups of 5 teams.
Visitors: 600K international visitors expected; 2.5M tickets sold (May 23).
Ceremony: Our own James Bond, Jean Dujardin, will open the ceremony tonite.
Costs: no official data released by the Federation
Revenues: 457M€ (estimates)
Fun fact: Chile makes its entry into the World Cup.
Not so fun fact: England is the only nation from the North Hemisphere to have won a World Cup.
Not so fun fact n°2: New Zealand never lost a World Cup pool game 😅
182 countries will broadcast the event.
The World Cup website will stream the games in countries where rights weren’t sold.
Who bought the rights to the World Cup in Europe?
→ 🇫🇷 TF1, France Télévisions and M6 (TF1 lead buyer licensed rights to fellow broadcasters who will share the 48 games).
→ 🇬🇧 ITV, S4C, STV
→ 🇮🇪 RTE
→ 🇩🇪 Prosieben, Joyn, ran.de
→ 🇮🇹 RAI, Sky
→ 🇳🇱 Ziggo Sport
How big is the RWC viewership?
Michel Poussau, World Rugby’s chief of events and Rugby World Cup 2023 executive Director, said:
“I am optimistic that viewership for the 2023 Rugby World Cup would eclipse the 857 million people who tuned in to the 2019 edition in Japan, which marked a 26 per cent increase on the 2015 tournament held in England”. (source: Sportspro).
What broadcasters have lined up for us?
Dedicated hubs of course with live, replays, news and archive content.
But guess what else? FAST Channels.
TF1 - The French team’s top games
ITV - Rugby World Cup Classics
Fancy advertising during the games?
It will cost you up to 290K€ gross for a 30” on opening night. The finale, if France is in finals, may even go up to 350K€ gross (+20K€ gross vs the Football World Cup Finale between France & Argentina)(source: Le Monde).
OTT & Rugby
The 1st OTT platform that comes to mind is The Rugby Network.
Launched in 2021 by the Major League Rugby, it offers North American rugby fans a central destination for live games, news and replays.
Yes Americans are interested in rugby too (1.3 million people participate in rugby in North America, with a further 8.8 million active fans – 2021).
But the last few weeks saw the launch of two new OTT platforms dedicated to the sport.
Governing body, World Rugby, launched its free to air, global streaming service and will stream live games in markets where rights were not sold. 1000+ hours of archive content will complement.
This move confirms the value OTT brings to sports organisations. No audience lost with a streaming platform filling the gaps where needed.
The service is available on the web, iOS/Android and Smart TVs incl. Apple TV and Android TV.
“This is an opportunity for rugby fans around the world to get closer to the game we love. Rugby is an incredible sport, and we want to deepen the connection it has with new and existing fans through live rights, never seen before archive content, and our World Rugby Studios original programming. RugbyPass TV is the destination for global rugby content.” - World Rugby Chief Marketing and Content Officer James Rothwell.
The sport organisation, New Zealand Rugby, launched a free, global direct-to-consumer service.
It offers on demand content ranging from originals, behind the scene footage of NZ based teams.
It’s available on the web and iOS/Android. Too bad they couldn’t launch Samsung TV and other Smart TVs right away but there’s still time until Oct. 28th.
“NZR+ is the result of a simple concept, to be more fan-centric. With the investment and technology capabilities of Silver Lake, alongside the collaboration across rugby especially within the All Blacks and Black Ferns team environments we have built a product that aims to unify and inspire at a global scale. NZR+ will evolve as fans engage with it, the platform and its content will adapt as we learn more about what works and what doesn’t. But right now, we are excited to share NZR+ with the world.” - NZR CEO, Mark Robinson.
Both platforms were designed and built by Endeavour Streaming.
What about streamers, who will stream the RWC?
→ Starzplay (MENA)
→ Stan Sport (Australia) along Free to air broadcaster, Nine Network
→ Viaplay (Nordics)
→ Fancode (India)
I like the infography released by IMG this morning to showcase the depth of their archive vault:
As well as the 2 gamified elements within the RWC app:
🎬 Show of the week:
Rugby too has its docu-series now thanks to producer Mediawan and streamer Paramount+.
“Le Stade” follows le Stade Toulousain, the team with the record of 22 Top 14 titles.
It’s the next show on my to watch list. Season 1 & 2 are live in France, international audiences will have to wait Oct. 27th for Season 2.
That’s it for today.
Enjoy the game tonite and see you next Friday for another edition of Streaming Made Easy!
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