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Thread: Broadcasting Rights out to Tender

  1. #26
    Learning All The Songs Noel Cleal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gray77 View Post
    Looks that way, but in reality they kind of exist that way now. They sell England, World Cup and Challenge Cup rights separately from SL rights now, with the BBC seemingly the preferred option for those games. I think they are looking to formalise the split, with lower league games in there as well so that (IMO) SL clubs don't have to give up any of their money in future to those below them. If you have a deal for SL and one for everything else you're basically telling the RFL to fund the lower leagues with World Cup and Challenge Cup revenue, with SL keeping all of their share. That's my reading of it anyway.
    Agreed, there can be no argument if there are two clear and separately contracted deals.
    I could agree with you but then we would both be wrong.

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    Learning All The Songs Noel Cleal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyprus View Post
    The Stobart deal was the biggest monumental mistake by any sport governing body. It defined the game as worthless.
    I agree, it has been clear that after this deal it has been hard to attract sponsorship to the sport. If you are paying for your sponsorship it is a massive slap in the face. Imagine you went to a match and paid to get in then found out everyone else got in for free. You would feel ripped off. The same is with companies sponsoring, suddenly they want "the Stobart deal".

    The annoying thing was if they had given the sponsorship to a charity it would have been great PR and would have been viewed as a great deal with no impact on future revenue.

    This is what makes the Papa Johns deal so frustrating. Suddenly other sponsors will be asking why they have to pay in cash. The final kick in the teeth is I am on their mailing list and they have sent me stuff about the Paralympics and Football recently but no plug for Super League. Even they think this deal is worthless.
    I could agree with you but then we would both be wrong.

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    In The West Stand Belgian Saint's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noel Cleal View Post
    I agree, it has been clear that after this deal it has been hard to attract sponsorship to the sport. If you are paying for your sponsorship it is a massive slap in the face. Imagine you went to a match and paid to get in then found out everyone else got in for free. You would feel ripped off. The same is with companies sponsoring, suddenly they want "the Stobart deal".

    The annoying thing was if they had given the sponsorship to a charity it would have been great PR and would have been viewed as a great deal with no impact on future revenue.

    This is what makes the Papa Johns deal so frustrating. Suddenly other sponsors will be asking why they have to pay in cash. The final kick in the teeth is I am on their mailing list and they have sent me stuff about the Paralympics and Football recently but no plug for Super League. Even they think this deal is worthless.
    It is to us.

  4. #29
    Learning All The Songs Noel Cleal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gray77 View Post
    People have discussed that with the PL, but it’s tough to make the sums work really when you realise the costs involved in production and actually broadcasting games, which you have mentioned.

    You’d need a base starting point well above £50m annually to even think about doing it, because the one thing secure about Sky is that they ain’t going bust and they’ll be there for the entirety of the contract doing the unglamorous things that cost loads but nobody really factors in. You’re also not relying on people paying subs to maintain profit margins either.

    I think £10 a week would be steep, but I think maybe £20 a month could attract 150,000 to 200,000 people. Our viewership is almost entirely RL fans these days, because we are hardly ever on Main Event where floating viewers tune in and see what’s on. The vast vast majority who tune into Arena or whatever channel we’re usually on have done so deliberately, and so the vast majority of them would IMO pay for an alternative service. We probably also have thousands of RL fans out there who don’t subscribe to Sky for whatever reason, so they’re worth thinking about as well.

    £20 per month multiplied by 200,000 would make £48 million. It’s still nowhere near enough though.
    From watching other sports it is a case of building up you subscribers, you have start up costs and technical issues to start. However the business model should be based on getting more than 200k viewers.

    The killer in this plan is the same problem Rugby League has always had, which is self interest. If Elstone was a strong leader willing to tell clubs the hard truths, like "there is zero commercial value in having Leigh and Featherstone in Super League, sorry you are not allowed in". We could get a lot more subscribers if we had wider appeal and we have sold the potential of this over and over again to just deliver the same M62 corridor sport. It appears that our sponsors and broadcast partners have got wise to us and are no long willing to give us money for the same old hat.
    I could agree with you but then we would both be wrong.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Noel Cleal View Post
    From watching other sports it is a case of building up you subscribers, you have start up costs and technical issues to start. However the business model should be based on getting more than 200k viewers.
    Another problem is that we don’t have any interest overseas. The Australians and Kiwis barely recognise our comp, and viewing figures down there for even our Grand Final are basically nothing. So, whereas the NRL can make money over and above their tv deals with the NRL Global pass, we have no such option.

    The WWE Network was also a good example of a company thinking it has a massive audience that would be willing to pay $9.99 a month for loads of content and their monthly PPVs (which were previously around $50 each) but that has stagnated at around the million mark and they’re constantly giving away free months to boost the figures. A million subscribers to a Super League Pass showing live games would be great, but WWE tv audiences are around 2 million meaning only half were interested in paying extra for the biggest shows every month. And they have billion dollar tv deals as well, whilst we don’t.

    For a model to work we’d need to aim for 250,000 to 300,000 customers paying at least £20 a month. But all of those people would need to hang around, and you’d think there’d need to be some external revenue from sponsors or partners also needed to make it truly viable. I struggle to see how we get those deals in place given our appalling record for getting sponsors or partners on board, and I struggle to see how anyone has the creativity or ambition to even think about this when they can simply take a wedge off Sky every year.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gray77 View Post
    For a model to work we’d need to aim for 250,000 to 300,000 customers paying at least £20 a month.
    I think at that price, you'd struggle to get 250-300.
    I f*cking hate wi*an. And rugby yawnion. And Tories. And Brexit f*ckwits.

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    I think streaming has potential for RL if used in the right way: if the governing body was able to negotiate rights to broadcast Championship RL and a selection of non-televised cup games and internationals as a supplement to the main TV deal then it could be a decent additional earner and make non-SL clubs a more viable option for sponsors.

    If streaming is the sole means for broadcasting the top tier competition, though, then I think we can basically kiss goodbye to professional RL. If moving wholesale to satellite TV hurt the national profile of the game (I think it did), then moving wholesale onto an app run by the RFL or SL would kill it stone dead, and also no doubt make a fraction of what the Sky deal brings in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Webbo Again View Post
    I think at that price, you'd struggle to get 250-300.
    Nah, we’d top 300 definitely ;-)

    £20 a month isn’t ridiculous when you think that BT charge £29.99 for full price access to their sports channels via Sky. The vast majority of their subscribers have it for second rate PL games and a dozen midweeks of CL every year. If you could have a proper RL channel with every SL game live, good off field content, chat shows etc, I don’t think £20 a month for 180 live games and loads of RL content is steep really. But I know it isn’t happening, I was just thinking out loud really. Our future is Sky or oblivion in the short term.

  9. #34
    In The South Stand Angry Dave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gray77 View Post
    Nah, we’d top 300 definitely ;-)

    £20 a month isn’t ridiculous when you think that BT charge £29.99 for full price access to their sports channels via Sky. The vast majority of their subscribers have it for second rate PL games and a dozen midweeks of CL every year. If you could have a proper RL channel with every SL game live, good off field content, chat shows etc, I don’t think £20 a month for 180 live games and loads of RL content is steep really. But I know it isn’t happening, I was just thinking out loud really. Our future is Sky or oblivion in the short term.
    Just thinking out loud here but how about a BT "Rugby" channel with both codes shown? As long as we get a fair crack of the whip that wouldn't bother me as I doubt we have enough content for a dedicated RL channel anyway. Plus it may attract a few casual fans from the other side. That said, I doubt they'd be up for it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angry Dave View Post
    Just thinking out loud here but how about a BT "Rugby" channel with both codes shown? As long as we get a fair crack of the whip that wouldn't bother me as I doubt we have enough content for a dedicated RL channel anyway. Plus it may attract a few casual fans from the other side. That said, I doubt they'd be up for it.
    I think there was a time when that would have worked perfectly. I think that time has long gone though. RU and RL both had their own things going on, and were called rugby by their fans and their media partners. Union was also a weekend sport whilst we’d moved to Fridays for our big games.

    However, as we know, Union has almost taken over the ‘Rugby’ terminology, partly because we surrendered it and our tv partner seemed unwilling to use it. I doubt their clubs or the RFU would want to ruin the ‘hard work’ they’ve done by then sharing a channel with something that made casual viewers think of us when seeing the word Rugby.

    Sky now have Sky Sports Premier League and Sky Sports Football, instead of just two football channels. The PL like to be seen as above and independent of other football, and I think Rugby Union now sees itself as THE rugby code and wouldn’t want ‘Super League’ diluting it’s influence in a similar way.

    And, as mentioned at the start, Union used to be a weekend afternoon thing, but their clubs now really like Friday night TV games as well because they get better tv deals off the back of it, so there would be an obvious clash which would mean they’d need more than one channel most weekends. And I bet you anything you like that their games would stay on the Rugby Channel and ours would be filtered off to some obscure BT Sport 3 or wherever in that scenario.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angry Dave View Post
    Just thinking out loud here but how about a BT "Rugby" channel with both codes shown? As long as we get a fair crack of the whip that wouldn't bother me as I doubt we have enough content for a dedicated RL channel anyway. Plus it may attract a few casual fans from the other side. That said, I doubt they'd be up for it.
    From an advertising point of view I don't think we would have much joy because of the sponsors exposure. In Rugby Union you will probably only see about 15 mins of rugby in those 80 mins the rest (55mins) will be stoppages and advertising, sponsors etc get all that exposure period. IN RL its the other way around with 55 mins of ball in play and 15 mins of stoppages that amount of exposure is not attractive for advertising, sponsors etc.

    Therefore RU can offer 55 minutes exposure and RL 15 minutes of exposure, so the fair crack of the whip will be around 3 times in favour of Rugby Union if we look at at it from a business in sport perspective.

  12. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gray77 View Post
    I think there was a time when that would have worked perfectly. I think that time has long gone though. RU and RL both had their own things going on, and were called rugby by their fans and their media partners. Union was also a weekend sport whilst we’d moved to Fridays for our big games.

    However, as we know, Union has almost taken over the ‘Rugby’ terminology, partly because we surrendered it and our tv partner seemed unwilling to use it. I doubt their clubs or the RFU would want to ruin the ‘hard work’ they’ve done by then sharing a channel with something that made casual viewers think of us when seeing the word Rugby.

    Sky now have Sky Sports Premier League and Sky Sports Football, instead of just two football channels. The PL like to be seen as above and independent of other football, and I think Rugby Union now sees itself as THE rugby code and wouldn’t want ‘Super League’ diluting it’s influence in a similar way.

    And, as mentioned at the start, Union used to be a weekend afternoon thing, but their clubs now really like Friday night TV games as well because they get better tv deals off the back of it, so there would be an obvious clash which would mean they’d need more than one channel most weekends. And I bet you anything you like that their games would stay on the Rugby Channel and ours would be filtered off to some obscure BT Sport 3 or wherever in that scenario.
    Yep, you're most likely right. It was just a passing idea. The only thing I will say is that they've also been hit quite badly by Covid but it would need strong leadership to make it work. Something we're hardly great at.

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