DAZN proposes ‘The New Deal’ for women’s football
January 17, 2024
Brands, broadcasters and clubs are being invited to support a campaign to ensure a commercially robust future for women’s football.
Sports streaming platform DAZN, one of the leading investors in women’s football, has already attracted commercial support, including from EA Sports and Adidas as global sponsors of UEFA Women’s Champions League coverage.
The New Deal for Women’s Football is named in recognition of a 1967 women’s football tournament in Deal, a seaside town in Kent. In staging the event, Arthur Hobbs, the organiser and a local carpenter, broke a ban imposed by the English FA since 1921. The tournament became a catalyst for change and the ban was lifted in January 1970.
DAZN sees the current environment as another watershed moment.
“The women’s game is at a crossroads” said Hannah Brown, Co-CEO of Women’s Sport at DAZN. “We see two possible futures. In one, stakeholders come together to build a major global commercial sport. In the other, progress is slow and a golden opportunity to accelerate growth is lost. The women’s game has significant commercial potential. The opportunity must be seized now. It requires a venture capital mindset, with an investment horizon measured over several years.”
The New Deal for Women’s Football calls for:
- A new deal from clubs, improving the match day experience, providing better facilities and increasing marketing.
- A new deal from sponsors, adopting a long-term investment horizon.
- A new deal from media and broadcasters, delivering broad distribution, premium coverage and enhanced marketing.
- A new deal from rights holders, collaborating with clubs, brands, and broadcasters to maximise media value and drive growth.
In short, DAZN is calling for a new deal for fans, working together with all stakeholders to deliver consistently high-quality experiences wherever and however they enjoy the game.
For its part, DAZN is removing its paywall to the largest portfolio of women’s football worldwide. This will drive audience growth and provide a new home for women’s football, offering greater access to games, content and the international women’s football community.
Women’s football now has an sturdy platform for growth. The recent Women’s World Cup and Euros were hugely successful, capturing the attention of fans worldwide. The WSL, Liga F, Frauen Bundesliga, NWSL and other domestic leagues are breaking attendance records. TV and online audiences are growing and broadcasters are increasing their investment in media rights.
“Women’s football is the most compelling sports investment opportunity for a generation,” continued Hannah Brown. “To realise its potential the game needs another moment of bravery and rule breaking just like that 1967 tournament.”
Esmeralda Negron, Co-CEO of Women’s Sport at DAZN, added: “We are committed to fostering and cultivating fandom for women’s football. Women’s football needs investment to realise its potential – developing a first-party relationship with fans across all demographics to scale its audience and become commercially viable”.
This comes in the wake of Karen Carney’s review of UK women’s football. The review aims to achieve world-leading standards for players and fans and calls for investment in building a sustainable pipeline of domestic talent, fully professional environments for the Women’s Super League and Women’s Championship, and increased investment in grassroots facilities. The Government has formally accepted all its recommendations.
Negron concluded: “Grassroots football has the potential to play a crucial role in driving the growth of the sport. Connecting the grassroots market to the women’s professional game is crucial in establishing a fanbase for women’s football from an early age”.