Rights holders continue to move online as FloSports adds major events to FloBowling, FloRugby, and more
AUSTIN, Texas — September 5, 2018 — FloSports, the innovator in live digital sports and original content, is on its way to a record year of rights deals. So far in 2018, FloSports has signed more than 150 new deals, representing thousands of live events that will now air on the network’s 20+ channels, including FloHoops, FloTrack, FloFootball, FloRugby, FloBowling, and FloWrestling.
FloSports carried its first live events six years ago. Rights holders without distribution or who paid for distribution on linear cable found a solution in FloSports to improve the media equity in their events and reach a global audience online. Today, FloSports has helped partners like USA Wrestling, NCAA, International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation, Big Ten Network and many others grow the value of their event rights, while an influx of leagues, conferences, and governing bodies has begun choosing OTT over linear options.
Of specific note, FloSports rights deals this year include the acquisition of The Rugby Channel, adding more than 50 new rugby competitions to FloRugby (launched in 2017); a multiyear deal with the Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) that launched FloSports’ latest vertical, FloBowling; a multiyear partnership with the Fédération Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB), positioning FloVolleyball as the No. 1 site for men’s and women’s volleyball coverage in the U.S.; partnerships with NCAA and Turner Sports to live stream the 2018 NCAA Division I East and West Preliminary Rounds on FloTrack, and professional events with international professional basketball league, the EuroLeague, on FloHoops, as well as some of the world’s most elite events like the Giro d’Italia and the Tour de Suisse on FloBikes.
“Cord-cutting is now a widely accepted reality, even among sports networks,” FloSports co-founder and COO Mark Floreani said. “But the bigger, more important trend we’re beginning to see is that rights holders across all levels of sports are evaluating OTT as an option, and many of them are making the move.”
While FloSports continues to see success in giving underserved sports the authentic, 24-7 coverage fans want and deserve, it’s also experiencing growth as major sports begin to understand the limitless possibilities of digital streaming. This year, the company announced major deals across multiple verticals, including partnerships with the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, and the rights to air the inaugural Jr. NBA World Championships’ U.S. regional games.
“One of the biggest reasons we see rights holders making the move to OTT — and specifically to FloSports — is because of our uniquely aligned interests, and our commitment to invest in their events more than anyone else,” FloSports SVP, Global Rights Acquisition Phil Wendler said. “As a direct-to-consumer business, we’re focused on innovating around the live event experience and investing in the content surrounding it. This has completely aligned us with rights holders because with this emphasis, there’s more interest in events, which results in more viewership, more spectators, and more sponsorship opportunities. It becomes a virtuous cycle.”
“Partnering with FloSports on FloBowling.com allows us to deliver more content and coverage to our fans and the entire bowling community than ever before,” PBA Commissioner Tom Clark said. “FloSports’ proven commitment to deliver consistent shoulder programming, content, and marketing, is what drove us to confidently make the switch.”
A recently published study by FloSports found that more than 50% of parents with kids under 18 agreed that their children will never pay for a cable subscription. As cord-cutting continues, particularly among the younger demographic, the company also offers rights holders an attractive audience. FloSports’ average viewer is around 34 years old, and today the brand has millions of monthly viewers and hundreds of thousands of paying subscribers.
Demonstrating its power at reaching younger sports fans, FloSports’ robust social channels reported a combined 307.1M video views on Instagram (Jan-June, 2018) according to CrowdTangle, which is more than the combined accounts during the same time period:
- All FOX Sports accounts (227.83M)
- All major college conferences (13.07M)
- All major U.S. national governing bodies (55.6M)
- All NHL teams (151.17M)
- All NFL teams and the NFL Network (235.89M)
- All MLB teams and the MLB Network (239.31M)
In 2017, FloSports aired 1,311 events compared to more than 2,500 events in 2018 representing tens of thousands of total live competitions, leading to 91% year-over-year growth.
To access live and on-demand coverage of any of FloSports’ 20+ networks, visit FloSports.tv and become a monthly or annual PRO subscriber on any one of FloSports’ sites. Both monthly and annual subscribers gain access to premium content across the entire FloSports network. Download the FloSports app on iOS, Roku, or Apple TV 4 to enjoy the sports across all screens.
FloSports, the innovator in live digital sports and original content, partners with event rights holders and governing bodies to unlock a world of sports coverage that true fans have been waiting for. Through live streaming of premier events, original video programming, and weekly studio shows, FloSports is growing the sports, the athletes and the fans. Current verticals under the FloSports header are Wrestling, Grappling, MMA, Elite Fitness, Boxing, Softball, Tennis, Pro Wrestling, Gymnastics, Marching, Basketball, Volleyball, eSports, Rodeo, Climbing, Swimming, Cheerleading, and Track.