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Netflix would consider bid for F1

NEWS STORY
23/09/2021

Netflix CEO admits that the streaming giant could make a bid for F1 should Liberty Media opt to put the sport up for sale.

Whatever one might think of Sprint qualifying, Overtake awards and the numerous other gimmicks introduced since Liberty Media bought F1 in early 2017, there is no denying that the American media giant has opened up the sport to a new generation of fan.

In a bid to attract a younger, global fan-base, Liberty has taken the sport into areas unthinkable under the previous management.

One such area is the Netflix series Drive to Survive which has proved hugely popular not only with diehards but casual fans and has even attracted new fans to the sport, such is the 'access all areas' behind the scenes footage that is made available, thereby humanising the sport.

Indeed, at a time a Saudi Arabian consortium is said to be eyeing the sport, Netflix CEO, Reed Hastings admits that should Liberty Media be interested in selling up his company would consider making a bid.

"A few years back, the Formula 1 rights were sold," he told Germany's Der Spiegel. "At that time, we were not among the bidders, but today we would definitely consider that now."

Unlike rivals Amazon Prime Video and YouTube, thus far Netflix has avoided live broadcasting of sport.

"We make entertainment and not journalism, which should have certain standards and follow ethical guidelines," said Hastings. "We also keep our hands off live sport.

"With sports broadcasts we have no control over the source. We don't own the Bundesliga, which can make deals with whomever it wants. But this kind of control would be a prerequisite for us to be able to offer our customers a secure deal."

At present the majority of the sport's income comes from its various broadcasting deals, many of which are regionally exclusive.

Previously, F1's director of media rights, Ian Holmes had admitted that discussions had been held with Amazon in terms of a TV rights deal, the sport already working alongside Amazon Web Services.

"We're talking to them about specifically acquiring our rights, in the same way you would sell to any other media company," he told Motorsport.com.

"But we're also talking to them about a channels arrangement where we have got the opportunity of putting F1 TV into the market."

Check out our Thursday gallery from Sochi, here.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by TSGoodchild, 24/09/2021 17:11

"Great. Anything to stop lining Sky's pockets."

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by Max Noble, 24/09/2021 10:20

"…and we promise we are not saying this to help our dear friends at Liberty Media get more $$$ out of any other bidders, no sir! Not that Briar Bush… not at all…"

Rating: Positive (1)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

3. Posted by kenji, 24/09/2021 1:50

"I wouldn't be too quick to dismiss this latest interest....Netflix know how to 'present' and they cannot manipulate the actual event but they can edit to show a much more interesting event. How often do we see the prods missing out on action that plays out in other areas but doesn't quite involve the cars out front? Maybe Netflix can bring some better elements to an overall presentation. If they ever do get their hands on the levers they could do us all a favor and get rid of the SKY presentation team. I mean would anyone miss Herbert/Croft/Hill/ Lazenby et al? I certainly wouldn't. There has to be better talent around. So let's hope that Netflix are interested enough to take this a bit further."

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4. Posted by phantom, 23/09/2021 22:51

"On the other hand, it would be nice to have access to a race AFTER it's run. No more rising at 4:00 am to watch.
"

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5. Posted by Superbird70, 23/09/2021 21:51

"They do know that they can't edit the race to get the outcome they want right?"

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6. Posted by BrightonCorgi, 23/09/2021 20:01

"Hope the Saudi's buy and fix or restore F1. "

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7. Posted by Fambank, 23/09/2021 18:37

"For the love of God...."

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8. Posted by Roli, 23/09/2021 17:16

"Holy S**T! I hope Prince Harry wont be one of the presenters.....Meghan interviewing Lewis??? Nooooooo"

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9. Posted by Endre, 23/09/2021 17:09

"God help us ..."

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