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Amazon Looking to Dominate Sports Media


The media world is already anticipating the imminent arrival of Amazon in sports media after reporters saw the company’s Chief Executive Jeff Bezos chatting with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell inside his booth during the Super Bowl.

Amazon is already providing live sports streaming services for two years. However, Global Sports Video Vice President Marie Donoghue reveals that Amazon is still struggling to come up with a strategy despite its work on consumer behavior analysis and experimentation. Donoghue says that Amazon is still on day one in sports, which means that the company is still learning during her first interview with the sports media division.

Donoghue, who spent 20 years in Walt Disney Co.’s ESPN, is the face of Amazon’s hot pursuit of sports. Donoghue is responsible for big shows like “OJ: Made in America” and the “30 for 30,” which are only a part of her reliable resume.

Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Google are all trying to print their marks on live sports, which is one of the remaining reasons why people are paying for live television. However, Amazon continues to headline the talks of domination in live games, especially after Donoghue’s signing.

Startup tech companies and digital platforms are trying to drive up media rights costs to profit from the live sports’ competition between the giant companies. DAZN will be paying professional boxer Canelo Alvarez at least $365 million for five years for the media rights of his fights and press conferences. The DAZN-Alvarez deal is one of the most prominent contracts in the history of sports.

Donoghue reveals that Amazon does not have live sports streaming rights as of today. However, Donoghue did not disregard the company’s interest in the lucrative sector. In 2017 Amazon got the digital rights to a few English Premier League football matches, as well as Thursday Night Football, and U.S. Open Tennis Championships.

Donoghue reveals that Amazon is focusing on how the company can provide Prime members with control on how, where, and when they will be watching their preferred sports. Amazon Prime includes a streaming service, but Donoghue believes that it is essential for subscribers to be able to view a game on their own time.

Amazon is currently using market research analysis on viewership data of its consumers to determine which sports products provide a more successful viewership experience than others. The company is also streaming Thursday Night Football on the video game streaming site Twitch. Twitch comes with an interactive platform that allows viewers to predict the outcome of the game. Donoghue believes that live sports will help provide value for Amazon Prime members.