Burgeoning DAZN nets FIBA rights in Canada
DAZN, the over-the-top streaming service owned by digital sports content and media group Perform, has landed the media rights in Canada to FIBA international basketball events until 2021.
Under the deal announced today, DAZN will show all games involving Canada's national teams, including at the 2018 FIBA Women’s Basketball World Cup in Spain and at the 2019 men’s edition in China.
Coverage begins with Canada's games in the 2019 World Cup qualifiers, against Bahamas on 24 November and the Dominican Republic on 27 November.
In 2018, DAZN will offer further World Cup qualifiers, plus the Women’s Basketball World Cup and the under-17 World Cups for both men and women.
Alex Rice, DAZN's managing director for rights and strategic development, said: "We're absolutely thrilled to have entered into this partnership with FIBA and offer Canadian basketball fans unrivalled access to all Team Canada matches over the next five years."
Canada are currently ranked 25th in the world in men's basketball and fifth in the women's game.
The deal with DAZN was brokered by FIBA Media, the joint venture between the federation and Perform, born out of a 17-year media rights agreement signed in 2016 and worth close to €500 million ($590 million).
However, FIBA has previously denied there was potential for conflict of interest, saying there would be procedures in place to avoid favourable treatment for Perform.
Frank Leenders, director general of FIBA Media and Marketing Services, told Sportcal at the start of last year: “The cynical people will say it’s a conflict of interests if your marketing partner is also a potential client. So FIBA will sign off and approve the deals and set the strategy, so there will be all the mechanisms in place to avoid anything that can happen which would be more in the interests of Perform than that of FIBA.”
At the time, FIBA also stressed that the Perform agreement did not represent a buyout of its rights and that no rights had been ceded to Perform.
DAZN went live in Canada this year, following launches in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Japan in 2016, and features live coverage of NFL games via NFL Game Pass, the league’s digital subscription product.
It also holds rights to top soccer leagues, including LaLiga, Serie A and Ligue 1, international rugby union matches, Russian ice hockey’s KHL, women’s WTA tennis and the MotoGP World Championship.
FIBA Media’s deal with DAZN follows last month’s extension, to 2021, of the rights deal with ESPN in USA for the World Cups and other international basketball.