Sports streaming service DAZN has rescheduled its UK launch for December and slashed the price to £1.99 a month.
DAZN has spent big on boxing rights and its first major live event for UK viewers will be British lightweight Luke Campbell’s fight with American Ryan Garcia on 5 December.
The self-styled ‘Netflix of sports’ is currently live in nine countries. But it is set to expand to more than 200, including the UK, on 1 December.
DAZN — pronounced ‘dazone’ — is streamed via an app. It is available on most internet connected devices, including phones, tablets, laptops, smart TVs and games consoles.
UK and global expansion had been planned for May, pinned on a fight between Britain’s Billy Joe Saunders and Mexican superstar Canelo Alvarez
A price point of £4.99 was mooted but not confirmed.
Those plans were shelved as the Covid-19 pandemic led to wholesale disruption of the sport schedule.
What sports are on the platform?
The cut-price monthly fee is for an initial period and designed to attract as many subscribers as possible.
It is understood DAZN has not decided how long to hold that price. But sources indicated it would likely be for months rather than weeks.
Further fights on DAZN’s UK platform are yet to be confirmed. Subscribers also have access to original programming and archive content.
DAZN also has the rights to show fights involving Britain’s Anthony Joshua — but not in the UK, where Sky Sports has exclusivity.
Unified world heavyweight champion Joshua is due to defend his titles against Bulgaria’s Kubrat Pulev on 12 December.
DAZN plans to add more live sports to its UK portfolio in a second phase of its expansion next year.
Domestic rights for Premier League football are not thought to be on its radar in the near future, however.
Who are DAZN?
The service is owned by Ukrainian-born billionaire Len Blavatnik’s Access Industries and Japanese advertising giant Dentsu.
Pitched as the first streaming platform dedicated to sport, DAZN launched in Germany in 2016, boasting Premier League, LaLiga and Serie A football.
Now also live in the US, Canada, Japan, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Austria and Switzerland, it made headlines with some huge contracts.
For its US launch in 2018 it spent $1bn on a deal with Matchroom giving it the rights to show Joshua’s fights in America.
DAZN then signed up Canelo on a $365m contract, believed to be the most lucrative anywhere in sport.
But that relationship has soured, with Canelo suing DAZN and his promoters earlier this year, after a third bout with rival Gennady Golovkin failed to materialise.
Last month DAZN made dozens of staff redundant, mostly in the US.
DAZN costs €9.99 In Italy, where it has exclusive rights to Serie A.
All territories launching in December, which include Australia, South Africa, Mexico and Nigeria will be priced at the equivalent of £1.99 or less initially.