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Movistar, Orange and Dazn will battle for the football client in full ‘low cost’ turn

Date: June 22, 2024 Time: 09:11:27

Start a new televised soccer fight in Spain in the 2023/2024 season. Movistar, Orange and Dazn refine their proposals to try to attract the customer of this premium content, in a more polarized Spanish market with a rise in ‘low cost’ in the last two years, but with less aggressive discounts given the situation of the inflation. The two operators finally reached an agreement for the purchase by the French company of the rights in the hands of the Spanish company. Meanwhile, the streaming platform seeks to scratch a little more share with stable prices. At stake is a market of between 2 and 3 million subscribers with very juicy monthly bills.

The big question that will remain on the market for the season was Orange’s position. Contrary to what Vodafone has been maintaining, the company directed in Spain by Ludovic Pech defends soccer as essential premium content for its first brand and maintains that high-end range in its portfolio. It was the first time that he was going to face a negotiation alone, without the surveillance of the National Commission for Markets and Competition (CNMC). And as they admitted from the group, the conversations were “fun”.

Telephone accounts made for the first time. It did not have the regulatory obligation to offer that 55% of the LaLiga and Champions League matches in full. Why not offer it exclusively to your customers? There was a certain regulatory risk in terms of competition. But above all there was the need to distribute the commercial risk and eliminate some weight in his balance on those broadcasting rights that cost him more than 800 million euros a year. Those “fun” negotiations have involved a ‘tug of war’ on the price. The group that owns Movistar has tightened the rope, so it is understood that the price claimed has been higher. It is estimated by the market that last year Orange paid its rival and Dazn together more than 300 million to have all the matches of all the competitions.

In the summer of 2022, it was especially aggressive in setting the access gate in its rate portfolio at 85 euros. Customers who contracted the most basic product with this premium football content could enjoy that price for a year (15 euros discount). On this occasion, the initial price started at 105 euros after the rise in rates due to inflation. They have placed that discount of 15 euros but if a terminal is purchased. This would place it at 90 euros. With this, it tries to defend a customer base of 1.1 million television customers. The operator has historically said that the vast majority of those close to 700,000 have the “king sport” in their offers.

Telefonica’s strategy

Telefónica maintains the current prices of its portfolio, after the increase carried out at the beginning of the year due to inflation. The first package with this premium content from MiMovistar costs 113.90 euros, as the ‘Todo el Fútbol’ product is still at 45 euros. Last year it was more aggressive, proposing a 25% discount (the module with all the matches of all the competitions stood at 32.25 euros). It is not yet clear if any specific promotion will take place this summer.

The operator chaired in Spain by Emilio Gayo has introduced a change in strategy to try to make football more profitable. It has launched Movistar Plus+, a package that will also be sold to non-teleco customers that will last for one LaLiga game and another in the Champions League per season. The price is 11 euros – the same as the current Essential basic product – and 14 for non-users. The impact of its predecessor, Movistar Plus Lite, was limited. And given this limitation of parties, a very relevant impact is not expected.

Dazn, at least ‘soccer player’

Dazn facing his second season in Spain trying to get the most out of his strong investment in the country. After last year’s auction, he paid a contract for which 480 million euros a year to LaLiga for 45% of the matches. Of those, a little more than 350 million would be returned by Telefónica and Orange -which pay to have these meetings on their respective pay televisions-. This would mean that the streaming platform would have to collect, according to market sources, around 100 million revenues directly through customers -between 270,000 and 350,000 customers with the 30 euros per month of its most complete package (it is You can pay the full year for 25 euros per month)-.

The British have put a five-year strategy on the table and, therefore, they must improve figures. They have not made public the income data for 2022, their first year with soccer. In 2021, when it only had sports like Formula 1 and MotoGP as well as leagues like the Premier League- it was close to 95 million. In addition to profitability, it has another relevant challenge: technology. At the start of last season, problems with their platform led Orange and Telefónica to transfer their clients to their own pay televisions to return them to the streaming ‘app’ a few months later. The person in charge of the residential business of Orange, Diego Martínez, admitted that the situation was “very different from how the season began and how it ended.” He is calm in this aspect before the new campaign.

This struggle for the football client occurs in a market like the Spanish one, in which it is estimated that there are more than 2.5 million subscribers. It is at least the figure that the League itself was considering in 2021, after a progressive decline in recent years. The employers’ association of the clubs set itself the goal together with the international fund CVC to reach the figure of 4.4 million in the medium term. This battle takes place in a context marked on the one hand by ‘low cost’ and by strong competition for the attention (and pocket) of consumers against streaming services such as Netflix, Prime Video or HBO. On the other hand, there is limited inflation and the change in attitude of telecommunications operators, who have spent quarters with much more commercial aggressiveness in more ‘premium’ products.

The start of this television preseason takes place with two doubts still on the market. One of them has to do with the duration of Telefónica’s contract, owner of 55% of the matches, with La Liga. After the auction, a five-year one was built -until 2026-2027- but subject to the authorization of the National Commission for Markets and Competition. This ‘green light’ has not yet arrived after months of contacts from both parties. The other uncertainty has to do with the Champions League. The owner of Movistar had had an auction with UEFA that started last June. However, a month and a half later, it still hasn’t been resolved. At stake are the 2024/2025, 2025/2026 and 2026/2027 seasons.

* This website provides news content gathered from various internet sources. It is crucial to understand that we are not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of the information presented Read More

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.
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