The OTT report | Chapter two: Audiences and data

2: Audiences and Data: Not Just a Number

For many niche and minority sports that are under-served by mainstream broadcast coverage, OTT platforms are already able to compete for rights-holders’ attention on the measure of quantity: audiences that are too small to attract a television fee can be viable online, and make a positive contribution to revenues if a property can aggregate and monetise them across a number of territories. As European Hockey Federation general secretary Angus Kirkland explains: “The one advantage we have [in going DTC] is if we can't get a broadcast deal in a territory we have the flexibility to say the content is available through the platform and maybe you have to pay to watch it. I'm not saying we will do that in the near future but it's a good opportunity for us because it means we don't have to accept a bad deal any more.”

That is a view seconded by David White, president of media at Lagardère Sports and Entertainment, who says: “If a federation, for example, cannot achieve a fee for their media rights, they haven’t really got a lot to lose by going DTC. They know where their fans are and they can work with their sponsors to make sure they can achieve delivery to the number of people they need to form the basis of an audience.”

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