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Goal signs new FIFA esports star

Global online football publisher Goal has signed professional FIFA player Danny Taylor as its first Playstation esports pro.

Taylor is a three-time grand-finalist at the FIFA eWorld Cup. He arrives at the DAZN Group platform from West Ham United, joining Graham McIntrye, previously of Hibernian, who became Goal’s first esports signing in February.  

DAZN lands European Rugby Rights

Fast-growing OTT platform DAZN has landed exclusive rights to the Heineken Champions Cup and European Rugby Challenger Cup (EPCR) in six international territories.

DAZN will screen 70 EPCR matches for four seasons across Canada, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy and Japan.

Starting on 12th October 2018, the platform will broadcast every round in this season's Heineken Champions Cup pool stage, quarter-final, semi-final and final.

The EPCR will have selected pool-stage matches and all quarter-final, semi-final and final matches streamed.

Sportsbeat launches spin-off

Sports content and syndication agency Sportsbeat has announced the launch of a sister brand, Storybeat, as it looks to expand its services into general news and entertainment.

Both brands now form part of Beat Media Group, which also owns national news agency Kennedy News & Media and the UK’s top-rated NCTJ journalism school, News Associates.

Sportsbeat has a track record working with many of the UK’s leading rightsholders, including the British Olympic Association, The Open, Premiership Rugby, 6 Nations, Football Association and London Marathon Events.

LAGARDÈRE signs media rights deal with INF

Lagardère Sports has announced it has signed an exclusive media rights deal with the International Netball Federation (INF). 

The sport marketing agency becomes the first agency to ever represent the INF and will commercialise and distribute international media rights from 2018 to 2023, beginning with the 2019 World Cup in Liverpool next July.

The agreement also includes the 2023 World Cup – as well as Fast5 tournaments, the Youth World Cup and World Cup qualifiers.

Eleven confirms UFC rights deal

Eleven Sports has confirmed its long-rumoured acquisition of UK UFC rights starting in January 2019.

It follows incumbent rightsholder BT Sport’s decision not re-bid for the mixed martial arts brand’s portfolio of events.

The new, multi-year deal covers all 42 live UFC events in 2019, as well as over 150 hours of UFC original and archive programming.

The agreement will also give Eleven Sports the option to make some events available in partnership with other broadcast platforms – a key pillar of the challenger broadcaster’s long-term strategy. 

Sky Sports to bring French racing to UK&I

Sky Sports Racing, the media giant’s new dedicated racing channel, has agreed a deal to become the exclusive pay TV broadcast home of French racing in the UK and Ireland for the next three years.

As part of the agreement with French rightsholder PMU, Sky’s At The Races will also become the official online video streaming provider of French racing in the UK & Ireland.

The move comes as PMU is set to launch a full daily service of over 10,000 live French thoroughbred and trotting races to the UK and Irish online betting markets. 

Infront lands SPFL media rights

Infront has unveiled a new agreement with the Scottish Professional League (SPFL) to become its exclusive media rights partner across all competitions.

The deal covers the international media rights for the SPFL Ladbrokes Premiership, SPFL Ladbrokes Championship, SPFL Ladbrokes League One & Two as well as the IRN-BRU Cup and Betfred Cup.

It comes after the SPFL terminated its relationship with MP & Silva, mid-way through a nine-year contract, amid reports that the agency had missed a series of payments to the league.

Warburton signs for BT Sport

BT Sport has added newly-retired former Wales captain Sam Warburton to its rugby punditry team ahead of the new season.

It follows the 29-year-old British & Irish Lions star’s shock decision to step away from the game through injury.

The former Cardiff Blues player, who announced his retirement in July, will join fellow ex-players Lawrence Dallaglio, Ben Kay, Austin Healey, Ugo Monye and Brian O’Driscoll on BT Sport’s expert rugby panel.

800k pay to watch Youtuber duel

YouTube’s landmark boxing match between vlogging heavyweights Logan Paul and KSI drew a peak global audience of 800,000 on the platform, according to reports.

The highly-anticipated weekend bout, which ended in a draw, was accessible via a pay-per-view broadcast, priced at £7.50.

But millions more reportedly tuned in via pirated streams, including on rival, Amazon-owned streaming platform, Twitch.

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