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Premier Sports takes stake in Joe Media to drive online impact

Pay TV broadcaster Premier Sports has struck a reciprocal content deal with social publisher Joe Media which will see both parties pool resources, rights and talent to grow their respective audiences.

The deal will see Premier Sports buy a stake in Joe Media Group for an undisclosed sum in return for content to be shared across both platforms. It's a tried and tested formula, with the closest examples either Dazn's relationship with Goal or Turner's with Bleacher Report.

What does the deal entail?

  • Under the terms of the agreement, Premier Sports has taken a stake in Joe Media, formally fusing both businesses to enable economies of scale through sharing sports rights, studio space and talent.

  • In the process, Joe Media will become an exclusive digital partner to Premier Sports, gaining access to tentpole events such as Italy’s Serie A, Spain’s La Liga and the Autumn Nations Cup Rugby.

  • In turn, the social publisher will gain a foothold on broadcast television to carry in-house programming such as House of Rugby and the more rounded All to Play For, presented by footballer Joe Cole.

  • The joint entity will marry Premier TV's 600,000 subscribers and potential free-to-air audience of 22m UK homes with Joe Media Group's significant digital audience, which generates over 100m views per month.

  • This relationship will be cemented further with plans in train to co-produce content suitable for simulcast to both parties' respective audiences, maximising impact and serving as a bridge between old world broadcast and new world digital.

What are both parties saying?

  • The tie-up follows the sale of Maximum Media Network, owner of the Joe brand, to Greencastle Capital in October with promises of 'significant investment'.

  • Explaining the rationale behind the move, Paul O’Donohoe, partner at Greencastle Capital, said: “It is a big step for us in achieving our vision for the Joe Media Group in bridging the gap between digital publisher and broadcaster."

  • He added: “The access this partnership provides to sports rights and new TV audiences gives us a unique position and offering in the market and is a strong verification of the great work our teams have done to date.”

  • Mickey O'Rourke, owner of Premier Sports, said: “Joe has a vast digital footprint across the UK & Ireland with inclusive male and female audiences and an extensive knowledge of how these audiences consume content online."