- Partners Biggest Live Global Sporting Event with Leading Global Media Company
- All Rights on All Screens Reaching Over 700 million People Across Europe
- More Games coverage than ever before across Free-to-Air, Pay-TV, Online and Mobile
- Reinforces Eurosport as the #1 European Sports Platform and pan-European Home of Olympic Sports
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) today announced that all TV and multi-platform broadcast rights in Europe for the four Olympic Games in the 2018–2024 period have been awarded to Discovery Communications, the parent company of Eurosport.
Today’s announcement kicks off a long-term partnership between the biggest global sports event, the Olympic Games, and leading global media company, Discovery Communications. With an average of 10 channels in every market and the #1 European online and OTT sports offerings, Discovery and Eurosport will deliver more coverage across more screens than ever before to over 700 million people across Europe. Discovery and Eurosport’s coverage will be augmented by strong free-to-air access and innovative partnerships with broadcasters and distributors to bring the Games to life like never before. In a world of increasingly “anytime, anywhere” viewing, the Olympic Games are an unparalleled live event that aggregate enormous audiences and capture the world’s attention in a way that continues to become more valuable for marketers, distributors and fans.
IOC President Thomas Bach said: “This is a significant agreement for Discovery and the IOC, and we are excited to have Eurosport, the pan-European home of Olympic sports, as a partner. This agreement ensures comprehensive coverage of the Olympic Games across Europe, including the guarantee to provide extensive free-to-air television coverage in all territories. Discovery and Eurosport have demonstrated a major commitment to the Olympic Games, to Olympic sports and to the future of the Olympic Movement. The revenue generated from this long-term partnership will be redistributed by the IOC across the Olympic Movement to support the development of sport around the world. Discovery and Eurosport have also made an exciting commitment to partner with the IOC to develop the new Olympic Channel across Europe. Above all, this agreement ensures that sports fans in Europe will be able to enjoy excellent coverage of the Olympic Games and Olympic sports, both during and outside Games time, on their platform of choice.”
Discovery Communications President and CEO David Zaslav added: “Today is a historic day as we proudly add the Olympic rings to Discovery Communications’ portfolio of offerings. The long-term programming commitment with President Bach and the IOC reaffirms Eurosport’s position as the leader in sports across Europe, and will significantly enhance Eurosport's presence on all platforms. With Eurosport’s proud and long-standing tradition of broadcasting many winter and summer sports showcased during the Olympics, adding the Olympic Games, the greatest live event in the world, is a perfect editorial and strategic fit. But most of all, this new partnership is an exciting win for European sports fans as we will deliver record amounts of content across platforms to ensure the Olympic flame burns bright all year long.”
Discovery acquired the exclusive rights, valued at EUR 1.3 billion, across all platforms, including free-to-air television, subscription/pay-TV television, internet and mobile phone in all languages across 50 countries and territories on the European continent. Consistent with IOC and local market requirements, Discovery has committed to broadcasting a minimum of 200 hours of the Olympic Games and 100 hours of the Olympic Winter Games on free-to-air television during the Games period. Discovery will sub-license a portion of the rights in many markets across Europe.
Discovery’s 30-year history of being the global leader in non-fiction content makes the company uniquely positioned to capture and deliver the remarkable stories and characters associated with the Games not just every two years, but every year and throughout the year. With almost half of Eurosport’s existing programming being Olympic sports, the combination of its strong legacy in winter sports, cycling, tennis and athletics, and now the Olympic Games, will allow Discovery and Eurosport to engage passionate fans around these key sports 365 days a year. Discovery and Eurosport will have access to the Olympic emblems and the rich Olympic video library and archive to help solidify Eurosport’s position as the pan-European home of Olympic sports. The partners have also agreed to cooperate closely on the rollout of the IOC’s Olympic Channel, taking advantage of Eurosport’s #1 online sports destination – Eurosport.com – and leading OTT service, the Eurosport Player.
Juan Antonio Samaranch, IOC Executive Board Member and delegate IOC Member for European broadcast rights said: “We are delighted to have reached this agreement, which we believe will bring fantastic coverage of the Olympic Games and the Olympic values to the largest audience in Europe across all media platforms. Discovery and Eurosport will ensure the exposure of the Olympic Games through their own TV channels and media platforms, and, where relevant, by reaching sublicensing partnerships with other broadcasters in the various territories. Olympic fans will also benefit from comprehensive digital coverage on Eurosport’s leading pan-regional digital platforms.”
JB Perrette, President of Discovery Networks International, added: “We took control of Eurosport a year ago and embarked on a long-term mission to reinvigorate and strengthen its networks and brand. Today’s announcement is an incredibly exciting step forward on that journey. Eurosport’s unmatched technical prowess and ability to deliver the Olympic Games to 50 countries in 20 languages across multiple platforms is an important win for sports fans. We are thrilled and humbled to partner with one of the most recognised and powerful global brands, that not only delivers the biggest global event but also shares our company’s DNA of engaging and inspiring people in addition to entertaining them.”
The agreement covers the XXIII Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang in 2018, and the Games of the XXXII Olympiad in Tokyo in 2020, as well as the Olympic Games in 2022 and 2024, the host cities of which have yet to be elected.
Discovery and Eurosport boast unique assets and capabilities to bring the Olympic Games to more fans on more screens than ever before. With an average of 10 TV channels in every market, local infrastructure and teams on the ground across the region, and a 30-year legacy of developing great characters and stories, Discovery and Eurosport will bring the greatest sporting event to life like never before. Beyond free-to-air and PayTV channels, Eurosport Player, DPlay, Eurosport.com and Eurosport 360 will deliver more coverage and immersive experiences to passionate fans across all screens.