Optus retains Premier League rights, opens sports app to general public

Optus has retained the exclusive Australian rights to the Premier League for an additional three seasons.

The new contract, which commences from August 29, include exclusive live coverage on Optus Sport for all 380 Premier League games including on-demand channels, replay and short form from 2019 to 2022.

Optus has retained the English Premier League rights until 2022

Optus first snatched the broadcast and digital rights for the EPL from Fox Sports in 2015. Initially, it won the rights to 380 games from August, 2016. At the time, CEO Allen Lew said the move was central to the telco’s transformation to becoming a content platform.

Eight months ago, Optus signed the first agreement to take the sport’s reach beyond its own network, allowing Tabcorp to broadcast the EPL on Sky Racing.

Following today’s announcement, CEO Lew said he was “elated” to extend the coverage.

“This shows our long-term commitment to provide exclusive premium content and our transition to be a multi-media entertainment provider. Fans have shown that they love what we are doing in bringing the best club competition in the world to Australia and we look forward to taking it to the next level over the next four years,” he said.

Executive chairman of the Premier League, Richard Scudamore, described Optus as an “excellent partner”.

“We are very pleased that Optus has again chosen to invest in our rights in Australia and will exclusively broadcast the Premier League for the next four seasons,” Scudamore said.

In addition to the rights deal, the telco has also made Optus Sport accessible to all Australians with a direct to consumer option. Both Optus and non-Optus customers who weren’t previously eligible will have the option to pay $14.99 per month through Google Play or Apple for the Optus Sport app.

Lew announced Optus will open up Optus Sport to every Australian

“As a leading content provider in Australian sport, we’ve made the decision to give everyone the opportunity to subscribe to Optus Sport and experience the state-of-the art sport coverage and insights we have available to our Optus customers,” Lew said.

Subscribers will have access to the 2018 FIFA World Cup coverage, which includes two 24/7 channels and all 64 matches, 39 of those exclusive to Optus Sport. In addition to the match coverage, subscribers will be given pre and post game analysis, in both live and on demand viewing options.

“As a bonus for fans, Optus has assembled an expert team of analysts comprised of international and national talent who will be based in Russia and Sydney and will produce and deliver five hours of dedicated programming every match day during the tournament. These teams will be led by former Socceroo Mark Schwarzer and Optus Sport’s Richard Bayliss, and will provide a unique insight into events throughout the whole tournament,” he added.

Lew said the new application was now compatible with smartphones, web browsers, Apple TV and Chromecast. Optus Sport is yet to announce its full World Cup programming, on-air talent and line-up.



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