Exclusive: Simon Denyer Talks Current Matchroom Boxing USA Plans, Potential Risks

With Matchroom Boxing set to start a massive U.S. expansion with the help of Perform Group, the global sports media company's CEO Simon Denyer talks about when fans should expect to have access to the DAZN streaming service.

In a recent announcement aimed to create waves in the U.S. boxing market, Matchroom Boxing will promote 16 shows in the United States every year for the next eight years and be streamed exclusively on Perform's DAZN streaming service. According to Denyer, the deal, worth $1 billion, has been one months in the making and fans should expect the platform to be available in the United States with the first Matchroom Boxing show streamed there coming in the months after it is launched.

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"We’re now ready to go and the key thing now is that we’re announcing it in May is that Eddie needs a few months to sign up the fighters, securing the venues. We’re going to be launching the platform later in the summer. We’ll start showing some of the global boxing in August and then we’re going to be showing the first U.S. show sometime in September and then there’s going to be a big show every three or four weeks, not just from America, but also from around the world," Denyer said. 

As with any new service being launched in a new territory, there are a number of risks. The problem with DAZN is not competing with other sports streaming platforms, such as the new ESPN+ service, but with the television culture in the United States and the people being accustomed and being locked in to expensive cable packages. Denyer said that sports fans wanting to sign up for DAZN will likely sign up for other streaming services and still save significant amounts of cash compared to signing up for a cable bundle.  

"The thing about OTT is that you need to grow the market, OTT is the future. The problem with broadcasting here in the U.S. is actually the cable bundle. It’s taking up $160, $170 of your monthly salary for a load of stuff that you’re not watching. The key to us is for people to get off that cable bundle and to sign for multiple OTT stuff and if they are a sports fan, they’re going to sign up for ESPN+ and they’re going to buy our service and they also might have Netflix and Hulu as well, but if you add all that up, they won’t even spend $50. We’ve already seen in the territories that we’re in that multiple people are signing up for multiple OTT services and still saving up money that they will with cable and satellite TV," Denyer said.

The DAZN platform is available in other countries such as Germany and Japan and they started expanding into the North American market by releasing it in Canada in 2017. 

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