HomeBroadcastNine Targeting Cricket Rights, Hoping To Keep Australian Open

Nine Targeting Cricket Rights, Hoping To Keep Australian Open

Nine CEO Mike Sneesby

Nine Targeting Cricket Rights, Hoping To Keep Australian Open

Nine Entertainment Co CEO, Mike Sneesby, has revealed the broadcaster is hoping to win the rights to broadcast cricket, and said the media giant can afford to broadcast both tennis and cricket over Australian summers.

The discussion comes following a recent report in which Seven West Media CEO, James Warburton, said he would be willing to drop cricket broadcast rights to win back the rights to broadcast the Australian Open.

Nine originally held the broadcast rights for 40 years for cricket in partnership with Cricket Australia until 2018 when it won the broadcast rights tender for Tennis Australia and the Australian Open, when Seven, who had previously held the rights to the Australian Open, picked up the cricket rights instead.

After the successful broadcast ratings of the Australian Open and the conflict-filled relationship between Seven and Cricket Australia, Sneesby told The Sydney Morning Herald renewed strength in the advertising market and growth in subscriptions opens possibilities for the network to broadcast both tennis and cricket.

“Nothing’s out of the question,” Sneesby said.

“The television landscape is changing dramatically… and we’ve made some really important inroads into being part of that shift of consumer behaviour to streaming consumption.

“The future will be very different to what we see today and that means the old paradigms that existed previously, ‘this sport must be here, and that sport must be there’, all of that starts to get thrown out the window when you’re not limited by the constraints of purely linear and, in the years gone by, a single channel broadcast,” he said.

The pursuit of added broadcast rights for Nine comes after the growth of Stan, which now has more than 2.5 million subscribers and Stan Sport is continuing its pursuit of global broadcast rights with a number of key announcements in recent months.

Continuing the discussion of broadcasting both the Australian Open and the summer of Australian cricket, Sneesby said: “Let me be clear.”

“There is no other television business in the Australian market that has the breadth of assets to back up a sport.

“We’ve got a proposition that can offer…something no one else can.

“Of course, numbers come into play and we’ll always have a fair and open negotiation with any of our partners,” he said.

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