‘We’re trying to disrupt the market’: Optus marketing boss defends EPL plans

ben white

“EPL offering will be far superior”: White

The head of marketing for Optus has said it is not backing away from a controversial decision to limit access to English Premier League content to people who have a contract with them.

Yesterday’s announcement from the telco it had pushed back pre-registration for the EPL for at least a fortnight for fans had led to speculation that it might be looking at ways to offer a wider deal to non-Optus customers to maximise the property.

But in an interview with the Australian Financial Review today, Ben White, acting managing director of marketing said while other telcos had their positioning based on things like network speed, Optus was building its position around exclusive content.

He added: “Clearly EPL fans are very passionate, we totally understand that, but we are trying to do something here to disrupt the market and we knew and expected that there will always be people that don’t like change.”

He also defended the way the company will deliver the matches over the internet, saying: “There are lots of different types of content delivery models … we think ours is another very valid model to put into the market as well alongside pay TV, free-to-air and on-demand, like Netflix.

“We are very confident that our EPL offering is going to be far superior to what has been seen in Australia to-date, with not just live games, but much better pre-game, half-time and post-game shows and a host of other programs.”

The telco will also have the rights to the 2018 World Cup in Russia, with White saying the market would have a “better understanding” of the telco’s offering by then.

But he hinted the company could look to open up access to its content more widely, saying: “We will also have a road map of the way that we are going to offer content over time, so we could be in a very different world by the time we get to the next World Cup in 2018.”


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