Bruin Sports Capital and WPP have entered into an agreement with the National Football League to grow NFL Game Pass in Europe, the league’s premium OTT offering that features all live NFL games, NFL RedZone, NFL Network and award-winning NFL Films programming targeting NFL’s avid European fans.
In support of this, today it was announced that Bruin and WPP have formed a new company that, through its strategic license from the NFL, will evolve the NFL Game Pass business as part of the NFL’s international growth strategy. The new company will be headquartered in London; its name, CEO and executive team will be introduced shortly.
Today it was also announced that Deltatre, a Bruin Sports Capital portfolio company and global leader in sports media and technology, will now power NFL Game Pass across a combined 61 European countries and territories. This includes the development of a new, state-of-the-art product which will feature a rich user experience optimized for cross-platform viewing. Deltatre will also manage end-to-end technology delivery, streaming, user-facing applications, back-end support, payments and customer service.
Digital media services will be led by data-driven sports marketing agency, Two Circles, which is part of GroupM’s ESP Properties and supported by fellow WPP agencies MEC and Ogilvy. Two Circles, the 2017 BT Sport Industry Awards Agency of the Year, will work alongside Bruin and Deltatre to grow NFL Game Pass’ European subscriber base.
“As the NFL continues to prioritize Game Pass, we sought out key experts to unlock the significant potential across Europe,” said Mark Waller, EVP of International & Events at NFL. “Bruin and WPP have a proven track record of innovation and success and we believe they are the best companies to help take Game Pass to the next level in Europe, technologically, operationally and in terms of growing the user base.”
“Sports content is set to be more valuable than ever, especially given how fans are increasingly choosing to consume,” said George Pyne, CEO at Bruin Sports Capital. “Bruin is going to continue to be an aggressive investor in forward-looking technology and business models, such as OTT platforms and SVOD as this endeavor demonstrates. We are thrilled to work alongside the NFL and WPP on this business, and excited to showcase the ways our portfolio company Deltatre will transform the Game Pass product in Europe through its innovative OTT platform.”
“We’re confident that Game Pass will grow to become one of the NFL’s most important licensed assets and will reach new levels in Europe with the support of our media, sports and tech know-how, and the combined marketing capabilities of Two Circles, MEC and Ogilvy,” said Martin Sorrell, WPP CEO. WPP recently established a dedicated sports practice to act as a global point of entry to the Group’s collective sports services and expertise.
“There is a confluence of key global trends informing our digital strategy, including the rapid global improvement of digital infrastructure and the growing importance of online video. We feel that Game Pass is well positioned for success given these trends,” he continued.