Amazon Looks To Seize Opportunities In Cricket Streaming As Disney's IPL Contract Nears Expiry, Inc AMZN is looking to expand its cricket programming in India, a country where the game enjoys huge popularity, the Financial Times reported Monday (Mumbai time).

What Happened: The move comes after the Jeff Bezos-led company acquired rights to broadcast cricket matches between India and New Zealand last month from 2021 and 2026.

Streaming rival Walt Disney Company DIS has rights to broadcast the Indian Premier League (IPL) and Indian national cricket, which expire in 2023 and 2024 respectively.

Amazon Prime Video country manager Gaurav Gandhi told FT that the company would consider further opportunities to secure cricket rights.

“Expanding into a space which the country loves makes sense,” said the executive.

“I do feel that it does add an interesting dimension to our overall offerings . . . We’re happy to look at each individual opportunity that goes by,” Gandhi told FT.

Why It Matters: Disney’s domination of Indian cricket has helped fuel its rise to the top of the Indian streaming market, noted FT.

The company is expected to end 2020 with 28 million subscribers in India. Amazon has 17 million subscribers for Prime Video and Netflix has 5 million, according to Media Partners Asia.

In 2017, Facebook Inc’s FB  $600 million bid to broadcast Indian cricket matches did not succeed. 

Disney beat both Facebook and Sony Corporation SNE  to secure the rights to broadcast IPL for $2.6 billion that year, as per FT.

Price Action: Amazon shares closed nearly 0.5% higher at $3,116.42 and fell 0.12% in the after-hours session. On the same day, Disney shares closed almost 13.6% higher at $175.22 and fell 0.43% in the after-hours session.

Related Link: Facebook Joins Amazon, Disney In India's Hot Cricket Streaming Market

Photo by Chubby Chandru on Flickr

Posted In: NewsEventsTechMediaCricketIndiaSVODThe Financial Times