It will make streaming service Amazon Prime Video the home for all men’s elite tennis outside of the four majors. In the process it will take Sky out of the tennis market – the broadcaster recently revamped its sports portfolio into thematic channels – tennis was excluded and can be found on the broadcaster’s mixed sports channels.
According to The Guardian, Amazon paid £10 million for the contract, with Sky failing to match the £8 million paid for the current contract that expires in 2018.
“This is a real game changer. And lays down a marker for future sports rights auctions. Amazon must be considered as a serious threat to sports rights holders not only in the UK but other markets as well,” said Paolo Pescatore, VP, Multiplay and Media, CCS Insight.
Amazon already has the rights to live audio commentaries of the Bundesliga in Germany; in the United States it has the rights to stream 10 Thursday night American Football matches alongside more traditional rights holders NBC and CBS.
All eyes will now turn to the renewal of Premier League rights early in 2018 with the possibility Amazon may put in a bid for one of the smaller packages.