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Tim Armstrong Talks Verizon-NFL Partnership, A 'Building Block' Of Broader Mobile Plans

Tim Armstrong Talks Verizon-NFL Partnership, A 'Building Block' Of Broader Mobile Plans
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Verizon Communications VZ)'s plan to livestream the upcoming NFL playoff games and Super Bowl could set the stage for future mobile content plans and partnerships. 

The Executive

Tim Armstrong, CEO of the Verizon subsidiary Oath, spoke to CNBC’s Julia Boorstin at CES 2018 about Verizon's plans to stream NFL playoff games to mobile users as well as the trend toward mobile content. 

The Thesis

The NFL-Verizon partnership means all NFL playoff games and Super Bowl LII will be available for livestream viewing through the Yahoo Sports app, Armstrong said. The nearly $2-billion deal, signed in December, extends into the next NFL season and will be available to non-Verizon customers.

When asked about the deal's high cost and declining NFL ratings on TV, Armstrong said the ratings drop does not necessarily imply a decreased interest in the NFL, but rather a drop in television viewership as a whole.

The NFL partnership is a "building block" of Verizon’s greater plans to expand into mobile content and keep up with the consumer shift to mobile, Armstrong said.

“The movement in the world is for the consumer to go mobile” said Armstrong. While he would not comment specifically on potential M&A, Armstrong said Verizon plans “more high quality content-related deals” and may engage in additional partnerships to that end. 

When asked about competitors such as Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) and Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ: GOOGL), Armstrong pointed out Verizon’s status as the largest mobile network in the world — which could keep the company in a competitive position as consumers gravitate toward content-on-the-go, he said. 

Price Action

Verizon closed Tuesday down 0.37 percent at $51.61. 

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Posted-In: CES CNBC Julia Boorstin nfl Super Bowl LII VerizonNews Media Best of Benzinga


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