Amazon to Pay $1 per US Prime Member for 2017 NFL Thursday Night Football Live Streaming Rights

amazon prime 50 million dollars livestreaming rights for 10 NFL Thursday Night games

It’s embarrassing to lose something after you’ve proclaimed to the world that this ‘thing’ is going to help bounce your company back into relevance. But that’s just what happened to Twitter as Amazon bagged the deal with NFL to livestream the 2017 Thursday Night Football games.

Amazon reportedly paid five times what Twitter did for last year’s streaming rights. While $50 million seems like a lot of money for just the 10 games they will stream, it’s a small price for Amazon to pay to keep Prime members smiling. Twitter livestreamed the games for free, but Amazon will make it a Prime-exclusive deal in the hope of getting more people on board and keeping those already inside happy.

Amazon and NFL jointly announced the deal earlier today, leaving the flagging microblogging site unable to put together 140 characters to express its disappointment. Twitter has not yet commented on the mammoth loss to the strongest member of its livestreaming lineup of events.

A report on Recode shows that Facebook and YouTube were among the bidders alongside Twitter and Amazon.

The positive impact of this deal on Amazon and its Prime user base is obvious. What we don’t know is what will happen at Twitter, whose COO/CFO, Anthony Noto, is actually a former NFL CFO.

But even last year, Twitter did not get the kind of response it was hoping for from its advertisers, some of whom called the audience “underwhelming” because a significant portion of viewers weren’t watching the entire length of each game. Others were quite happy, and Twitter tried to highlight that kind of feedback:

“I think we’re feeling pretty good about it from a business standpoint,” said Lou Paskalis, senior VP and enterprise media executive at Bank of America, in a statement provided by Twitter. “I know we’re feeling great about it from an experience standpoint.”

For Amazon, it’s not about advertising or the revenues they can generate: it’s purely an Amazon Prime benefit for the estimated 50 to 65 million US Prime members (depending on who your source is.) From that perspective it works out to about a dollar a customer – cheap by any standards.

Verizon, NBC and CBS will also be livestreaming the games to their own subscriber base.

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Source: WSJ