Apple explores $2 billion bid for exclusive Formula 1 global streaming rights: Report
Apple explores a game-changing $2 billion bid for exclusive Formula 1 streaming rights, signaling a major move into sports entertainment.
In a bold move that could reshape the world of sports streaming, Apple is reportedly eyeing a potential deal worth $2 billion per year for exclusive streaming rights to Formula 1 coverage. This move signals Apple's continued expansion into the realm of sports entertainment, following its successful forays into MLB "Friday Night Baseball" and the MLS Season Pass on Apple TV+.
A Lucrative Proposition for Formula 1
According to reports from Business F1 Magazine, Apple is crafting an offer that the Formula 1 Group simply "cannot refuse." The proposed deal, if accepted, would double the revenue received by the Formula 1 Group for global TV rights. However, it's important to note that securing global rights may not be an immediate possibility, given the existing contractual agreements with broadcasters worldwide, 9to5Mac reported.
Apple seems to be taking a strategic approach by structuring the deal to gradually encompass more territories as rights become available in different markets. For instance, the US rights are currently held by ESPN until 2025, which aligns with the likely commencement of the Apple-F1 agreement. This potential seven-year deal would see global rights opening up approximately five years in, coinciding with the expiration of Formula 1's current media deals, set to conclude on or before 2029.
Apple's Formula 1 Vision
Apple's content division, Apple TV+, has already displayed a keen interest in Formula 1. The company is in the midst of producing a high-budget F1 movie starring Hollywood icon Brad Pitt, along with a documentary highlighting the achievements of racing legend Lewis Hamilton. Filming for the F1 movie kicked off at the iconic Silverstone circuit in July, though production has been temporarily halted due to an ongoing actor's strike.
While the prospect of securing Formula 1 streaming rights is tantalizing, it remains uncertain whether Apple will successfully clinch this deal. The tech giant has been linked to numerous potential agreements with various sports leagues, including the NBA, English Premier League, and NFL Sunday Ticket, among others. As of now, Apple has secured rights for the MLS Season Pass and MLB Friday Night Baseball, but the pursuit of Formula 1 rights may mark a pivotal moment in the company's ambitious push into the world of sports entertainment.
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