The first-ever sporting event to be live-streamed by Netflix will come next fall (Northern hemisphere). According to the Wall Street Journal, the streaming platform is in talks to create a celebrity-driven golf tournament to take place in Las Vegas (USA), which will be a test case for Netflix to show leagues and advertisers that it can handle important sporting events. Netflix has already demonstrated it can avail itself of documentaries and series to arouse people’s interest in sports.
Although negotiations are at an early stage, a golf tournament featuring celebrities makes sense as Netflix’s first foray into sports streaming. Sports live-streaming is difficult and costly and the deals for big-name events are ever more cutthroat. It is important to note that in 2022 Business Insider unofficially reported that Netflix had attemped to grab Formula 1 broadcasting rights in the United States.
Although Netflix has been interested in live sports content for some time and it has signalled its interest in sports for several years, in late 2022 Co-CEO Ted Sarandos said the company was looking for the right moment to get into the game. So far, Netflix has successfully invested in documentaries. In fact, many people credit Drive to Survive with making Formula 1 popular in the United States. Similarly, Full Swing and Break Point have been hits for golf and tennis respectively. Moreover, the company has entered into an agreement to create a series about the NFL called Quarterback, set to be released soon.