12/02/2019: beIN SPORTS maps out its new Extra initiative.

Monday December 2, 2019
Last month, beIN Media Group launched an ad-supported streaming service in the US designed to flank its linear services, beIN SPORTS and beIN SPORTS en Español, which count 14.8 million and 12.6 million subscribers, respectively. Cynopsis Sports asked Roy Meyeringh, vice president of business development and affiliate sales for beIN SPORTS in the U.S. and Canada, about how the platform fits into the programmer’s game plan.
 
Meyeringh on the strategy: beIN SPORTS XTRA is a showcase for our content and our brand. Through the service, cord-cutters and cord-nevers will gain exposure to our quality programming. We want to guide them to linear networks and have them watch more content the way it should be – on TV.
 
On content: BeIN SPORTS XTRA features select matches from La Liga (Spain), Ligue 1 (France) and Super Lig (Turkey). Soccer fans don’t only root for their clubs, but the audiences are passionate about and follow different players. There are so many matches on weekends taking place at the same time between 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. (ET), so there is a lot of content. Building on interest on women’s sports, we’ll show matches from the French national team and Paris Saint-Germain. It also has adventure and combat sports, plus news, highlights, analysis and digital-first programming. But the real differentiator for beIN SPORTS XTRA among AVOD services will be our 800 to 1,000 live events.  
 
On availability: Our goal is to be accessible in 60 million home early in 2020. We started with Roku and have a deal with Pluto TV, where we’re eager to launch. We’re in advanced stages of negotiations with two or three other digital platforms, talking with free-to-air stations, and want to work with traditional distributors. That number can compound depending on the deals. 
 
On additional AVOD opportunities: beIN SPORTS has a presence in 43 countries on five continents, with content offered in seven different languages. The focus now is on beIN SPORTS XTRA, which is our 59th local channel. We have 10 to 11 million subscribers in Canada. Our [U.S] rights cover leagues in Spain, France, Turkey and Brazil, so Portuguese-language. We could activate quickly.  
 
PROGRAMMING

 

Lots of ratings news to catch up on. Let’s work backwards. Saturday’s big college football games saw FOX Sports pick up its best-ever rating for is Big Noon Kickoff, as Ohio State’s win over Michigan handed FOX with a 7.5 metered market score to rank as the top event of the day and the network’s top college game of the season. In addition, according to Tunity Analytics, Ohio State/Michigan on FOX averaged 4,617,000 OOH viewers. Tunity also reports that Alabama/Auburn on CBS averaged 2,539,060 OOH viewers around the dial.
 
Looking at Thanksgiving, The NFL on CBS drummed up its most-watched Thanksgiving Day game in 27 years with 32.538 million viewers tuning in to the Buffalo/Dallas game. That was also good enough, according to the network, to rank as the most-watched regular season game on any network in three years. The broadcast was up 22% over last year’s game on CBS and up 7% from last year’s comparable game window, according to Nielsen fast national scores.
 
On NBC, Thanksgiving saw the SNF special pitting the Saints/Falcons notch 21.1 million viewers. That was good enough to take the night in primetime and rank as the most-watched Thursday primetime show since the 2019 NFL Kickoff Game.
 
The Arena Football League filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, officially ending operations after more than three decades of competition. The move comes a month after shutting down operations for all six of its teams. “We simply weren’t able to raise the capital necessary to grow the League, resolve the substantial legacy liabilities and make it financially viable,” league commissioner Randall Boe said in a statement. “We’re all disappointed that we couldn’t find a way to move forward, and we wanted to thank our fans, our players, coaches, everyone who loved Arena League Football.”
 
Minor League Baseball and Octagon announced that the pair will now be approaching the marketplace to identify, secure and enhance new media distribution opportunities for the league. “The media landscape is evolving quickly. Content rules the day and serves as the hook to current and next-generation fans,” said David Wright, chief marketing and commercial officer of Minor League Baseball. “We are committed to staying ahead of the content curve and investing in the necessary resources to best position MiLB to drive meaningful fan engagement and overall growth in a hyper-competitive space.”
 
beIN Media Group picked up exclusive broadcast rights to the 2019 and 2020 editions of the Fifa Club World Cup for the Middle East and North Africa regions. The deal covers 24 countries in the Mena region and kicks in with rights to next month’s tournament, which will be held in Doha.
STUCK.
A podcast, produced in partnership with Situation Interactive.
 
Episode 6 – Prioritize This.
Carina loves her new job and her boss, but isn’t sure how to balance contradictory priorities in her day-to-day. Hear how she can find the right rhythm that will let her be responsive while still carving out enough time to find her flow state.
 
STUCK Season 3 is available wherever you listen to podcasts or
SPONSORSHIP & PROMOTION

 

The Australian Open and Mastercard tied up an extension of their global partnership in a new multi-year deal. As the Official Payment Partner, Mastercard will offer a slate of experiences throughout the tournament to fans onsite and around the world. As Official Payment Partner, Mastercard will be featured in signage on court and around the precinct, including at point of sale in retail outlets. Additional opportunities include creating bespoke experiences for fans, an onsite consumer activation and the production of digital content for social platforms.
 
ESPN Events named TicketSmarter as the new title sponsor for the Birmingham Bowl. The multiyear agreement kicks in with this season’s bowl game, taking place on Jan. 2, 2020 on ESPN. “We are honored and excited to partner with ESPN Events to be both the title sponsor of the TicketSmarter Birmingham Bowl and an official secondary ticket provider of ESPN Events,” said TicketSmarter CEO Jeff Goodman. “At TicketSmarter, we want everyone to experience the power and excitement of live events.”
 
NASCAR announced that platinum-selling artist and award-winning singer/songwriter Cole Swindell will perform at the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Awards on Dec. 5 in Nashville. Swindell joins Chris Janson and Cassadee Pope, who will co-host the event with NASCAR on NBC’s Rutledge Wood.
 
DIGITAL, DATA & TECH

 

The 2020 NHL All-Star Fan Vote presented by adidas opened voting online at NHL.com/Vote and via the NHL App. For the first time, players have the opportunity to earn a donation to the charitable organization of their choice as part of the voting process. The player with the most retweets on Twitter and the player with the most ‘likes’ on Instagram across all of his posts that use the hashtag #NHLAllStar will each receive a $25,000 USD donation to the charity of his choice.
 
ESPORTS

 

Tencent continues to shore up its competitive plans for PUBG Mobile, detailing its 2020 esports plans with the close of the PUBG Mobile Club Open 2019 Fall Split Global Finals, announcing an overall prize pool that will top $5 million next year. Prizes will be split within the slate of amateur, semi-pro and professional leagues around the world and marks a 100% spike over this year’s purse. Overall, the esports ecosystem will offer a pyramid structure, with the Campus Championship at the bottom for amateur players, followed by the PUBG Mobile Club Open and Pro League at the country-level, leading to the PUBG Mobile World Championship 2020.
 
OverActive Media is officially rebranding Splyce, which will now be known as MAD Lions, complete with a new look and logo for the premier European League of Legends competition in 2020. “This is an exciting day for our organization, as we take another substantial step forward in growing OverActive Media globally,” said Chris Overholt, President and CEO of OverActive Media. “We want to thank our Splyce fans and invite them to join all of us as we head into an exciting new era in the LEC.”
 
Meanwhile Riot’s League of Legends All-Star event is locked and loaded for this week’s action, starting Dec. 5 out of Las Vegas and serving up a platter of Rift Rival tournaments, Ultra Rapid Fire mode, 1v1s, and competitive team matches, in addition to Teamfight Tactics events across the three days. Overall, 64 “All-Stars” will compete, including two pros from each esports region, six pro players chosen by Riot after fan-voting ends, League Partners that include streamers and prominent members, and more. In addition, Riot Games revealed the official theme song for the League of Legends All-Star Event 2019, “Start It Up” featuring Prblm Chld and new.wav.
 
INDUSTRY & ROSTER MOVES

 

The LPGA and the Ladies European Tour are teaming up in a joint venture partnership to promote women’s professional golf in Europe and around the world. LET players voted their support for the joint venture partnership uring the LET’s Annual Membership Meeting in Spain. “Two teams, joining for one common purpose, will create opportunities we simply could not have pursued on our own,” said LET Board Chair Marta Figueras-Dotti. “At its foundation, this joint venture is about creating opportunities for our members to pursue their passion, and their careers as professional athletes. In just the 60 days since we began working on this joint venture, we have already seen a dramatic impact on our LET Tour schedule – an impact that will be a positive result for virtually all of our LET Members.”
 
THE MAIN EVENT

 

Vikings/Seahawks on ESPN at 8p.
College students weigh in on TV today…
 
Cynopsis asked college students to answer questions touching on issues of interest to the rapidly evolving media industry, as audiences increasingly turn to streaming, and away from traditional advertising.
 
The answers we received to the questions we posed were smart, insightful – and food for thought.
 
If you didn’t receive last week’s special report, you can read it  here .
ON THIS DAY in 1975
Archie Griffin becomes the first player to win a second Heisman Trophy.
 
In the Know
Farewell to the AFL. AFL alumni Kurt Warner played with which team in the league? (Email cpursell@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your company and city).
 
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question
Who presented the Detroit Lions with an overtime, Thanksgiving gift? Answer: A couple of possible answers here. In 1998, head referee Phil Luckett misheard Pittsburgh’s Jerome Bettis call tails before OT. The Lions benefited from the blunder, receiving the kick and hitting the winning field goal. Kudos: Michael Ritz-Northwestern Mutual/NY; Lance Davis-Good Karma Brands Milwaukee/Milwaukee; Synda Kollman-Charter Marketing Group/Boca Raton; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Credit Union/Burbank

Later – Chris
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MGR, DIGITAL INSIGHTS & ANALYTICS >>
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WTHR/INDIANAPOLIS IN:
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DIRECTOR, DIGITAL MARKETING >>
SportsEngine Inc/Minneapolis MN:
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MARKETING & BRAND STRATEGY MGR >>
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