beIN MEDIA GROUP enters into cricket broadcasting as it wins exclusive rights to show Cricket Australia content in MENA over the next six years, starting with the 2017-18 Ashes
Cricket is set to reach its biggest ever audience in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) following a deal signed today by Cricket Australia and broadcaster beIN MEDIA GROUP. This is the first time cricket will be showcased on beIN SPORTS and signals the entry of the beIN MEDIA GROUP into broadcasting cricket for the first time.
The deal is the biggest ever cricket board rights deal for the region and will bring the best of Australian and international cricket to a growing MENA audience over the next six years.
beIN MEDIA GROUP has won the right to show the upcoming Magellan Ashes Test Series, with coverage starting on 23rd November. beIN MEDIA GROUP will screen premium cricket clashes including South Africa’s 2018 tour of Australia, India’s 2018-19 tour of Australia, and both the KFC Big Bash League and Rebel Women’s Big Bash League – Australia’s men’s and women’s domestic T20 cricket leagues.
All games will be available in HD via subscription channels and online and with the recent launch of the beIN MEDIA GROUP’s 4K channel, cricket fans in MENA can look forward to watching selected games from their favourite sport in Ultra HD over the coming years.
This is beIN MEDIA GROUP’s first ever cricket deal and sees the group continue to expand its sports coverage and overall sports portfolio. The move comes hot on the heels of a number of rights renewals over the past six months, including the exclusive rights to broadcast the UEFA Champions League and Europa League in the MENA region for a further three years.
Driven by an increase in the number of cricket supporting expatriates, including over eight million Indians, beIN MEDIA GROUP is expanding its offer to capitalise on the rapidly growing market for cricket across the Middle East and North Africa.
The six-year beIN MEDIA GROUP deal will cover all international tests, one day and T20 cricket matches for the men’s and women’s Australian national team in its home country. beIN MEDIA GROUP will broadcast cricket in more than 24 countries, including the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, Qatar, Lebanon, Iran, Iraq, Egypt and Morocco.
Commenting on the award, Yousef Al Obaidly, Deputy CEO, beIN MEDIA GROUP, said:
“It is important that we deliver on our promise to broadcast the very best global sports and events, and this is yet another significant milestone on this journey. The audience for cricket in the Middle East and North Africa is growing at an unprecedented pace, and viewers are rightly demanding better, more comprehensive, in-depth coverage. We are delighted that Cricket Australia has chosen to partner with beIN and we will guarantee cricket fans across the region access to high quality cricket coverage
“This agreement with Cricket Australia is the latest in a series of rights deals that have seen beIN MEDIA GROUP grow its portfolio, win a bigger share of the market and reaffirm itself as the undisputed first choice sports and entertainment broadcaster for the region.”
James Sutherland, Cricket Australia’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “We are delighted to welcome beIN to the cricket family and know their viewers will enjoy the range of quality cricket content on offer in Australia each season
“The Ashes is the perfect start for their partnership with us, and with the impending introduction of a Test championship and a new ODI league, beIN cricket fans will only benefit from international cricket’s new structure and greater context.”