Netflix reportedly lost F1 rights at auction

Streaming giant Netflix reportedly bid for Formula 1 broadcast rights but lost to Disney’s ESPN

Formula 1 has been on the rise in recent years due to its increasing popularity around the world. Netflix has invested in its documentary series, F1: Drive to Survive, the streaming service will be interested in having its share of the cake, but despite the offers, it won’t immediately broadcast the race live in the United States, according to new information.

Given Netflix’s growing pains, the company is backtracking from many of its principles. She not only hopes to start advertising by 2022, but also wants to get into live sports.

Formula 1 is an obvious choice for Netflix when it comes to live sports, not least thanks to its connection to the sport via Drive to Survive. Other reasons to invest in the game are: high demand from investors for growth, the game is broadcast almost all year round, which is great for the engagement rate, and finally, its popularity has spread around the world, Not just in one country.

However, Netflix’s involvement in creating the Formula 1 boom is a controversial topic. Many have claimed that F1: Drive to Survive, an accompanying documentary that comes out shortly before the new season, is an offshoot of the show’s success, but the reality is perhaps a bit murky.

The author of What’s on Netflix The Entertainment Strategy Guy believes that the argument that Netflix is ​​the only reason for this growth is exaggerated. In his article in The Ankler, he states that “Formula 1 has indeed seen a resurgence of interest in the US, but Netflix only plays a partial (if not tangential) role in this story”.

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In any case, Disney’s ESPN company will have acquired the rights to broadcast the race in the United States by 2025, but at a high cost. She reportedly pays $5 million a year to $90 million between 2019 and 2022. She will also stream select races exclusively on ESPN+.

“Netflix discussed with F1 and actually made an offer, but their offer was not up to par. F1 owners have made it clear that they are not yet ready to put all their races on the streaming service”According to Sports Business Journal.

Formula 1 rights outside the United States could be challenged in the coming years. In the UK, Sky holds the rights until 2024, and in France, Canal+ holds the rights until 2029.

Of course, Netflix will continue to produce and air a new season of Drive to Survive. The series has been renewed for a fifth and sixth seasons, with a fifth expected in early 2023.

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About the Author: Rusty Kemp

Tv ninja. Lifelong analyst. Award-winning music evangelist. Professional beer buff. Incurable zombie specialist.

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