Amazon made a series of announcements on Tuesday about how it intends to deliver the 80% of Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 matches in France for the next three seasons, the rights for which it won earlier this summer.
Speaking to RMC Sport, Head of Sport for Amazon Europe, Alex Green, explained the offering.
The new home of Ligue 1 will be the Prime Video Ligue 1 channel. It will be available exclusively to Amazon Prime members in France for €12.99 per month, a subscription that can be stopped at any time. Coverage will be provided by some of the biggest names in French football. We are announcing four today, presenters and commentators, and we will have more to announce later. The four names announced today are: Thibault Le Rol, Marina Lorenzo, Smaïl Bouabdellah and Julien Brun. And we will announce the names of our pundits and experts soon.
We’re also announcing that we’ll have a 7pm Sunday Highlights Show, which will look at everything that happened at the weekend before the big Sunday game. We are also working with the LFP to bring the start of the Sunday night game forward to 8:45 p.m., which is in the interest of the fans who have to go home after the game and of the clubs and players to give them more rest.
In Ligue 2, which we are also excited to broadcast, we have a partnership for the start of the season with La Chaîne L’Equipe, which will broadcast Ligue 2 matches for free for the first 10 matchdays until the end of September. From that moment, Ligue 2 matches will be broadcast on the Prime Video Ligue 1 channel.
Concretely, therefore, how much will subscribers have to pay to see Ligue 1 and Ligue 2?
It’s €12.99 per month. And you need to be an Amazon Prime member to access it, which is $5.99 per month or $49 per year.
How do I subscribe to Prime Video Ligue 1?
It’s easy. You will be able to subscribe with one click. We made it easy. And most importantly, it will be easy to watch because it can be seen on hundreds of devices. It is accessible through the TV boxes of the main operators so it will be very easy to subscribe and watch the matches.
How will you broadcast these matches?
We will be in every stadium, at the edge of the pitch, with a pre-match show and a post-match show with interviews. People will be able to feel the atmosphere there. Our focus from the start will be on the live matches. That’s what people need, they want to see their team. We will then develop other content and other shows.
Where will your studios be located?
Like I said, we will be all over the country. Each stadium is our studio. This is how we cover the Premier League and other sporting events. We want to be as close as possible to the action.
But where will your premises be located?
We have offices in Paris, but most people will be on the road.
Are you going to rely on other market players with a broadcast deal?
We have no other plans for partnerships other than announcing the L’Équipe deal. There are a lot of Amazon Prime members in France and this is our distribution channel. It will be easy to find the service and watch us.
No negotiations with the Canal +, then?
No. With no one, by the way. There is no discussion for other partnerships.
Much has been said about lot 3, owned by BeIN and sub-licensed to Canal. Would you be ready to buy it back? And if so, at what cost?
It’s their lot, not ours. We already have a jackpot that we’re focused on, with a lot of games, and that’s what we want to deliver.
What will be the editorial focus of your Ligue 1 coverage? Would you be interested, for example, in someone like Pierre Ménès?
Who is that? We don’t talk about any journalists other than the names given. As I said, our general approach is to be as close as possible to the action, to have very credible experts and familiar faces. But the most important thing is to be as close as possible to the action. This is what the fans want, we have seen it in Great Britain, elsewhere and even at Roland Garros.
How did Amazon decide on this investment? Was Jeff Bezos involved before he left?
The situation has changed and we saw it as a fantastic opportunity to support French football and give something back to the fans. That’s why we made an offer, and we were very grateful that it was accepted. That’s all I can say about it.
Do you already have ideas for documentaries or series, as has already been done with Premier League clubs? And are French clubs ready to open their doors to you for this sort of thing?
We have worked with PSG, as you know, and we continue to invest in sports documentaries. We have nothing to announce with French clubs but we continue to invest, like the agreement recently announced with Arsenal in Great Britain.
Can you assure us today that you will establish yourself in French football for the long term?
Absolutely yes. We are involved in French football. Totally committed. It is very important for us. At Amazon, when you’re in it, you’re in it all, and you try to give your best and be as successful as possible.
Is a similar fiasco to Mediapro possible with Amazon?
I will not comment on Mediapro’s situation or that of other broadcasters. We are Amazon, we do things the way we know how to do them and we wouldn’t have invested in French football if we didn’t think we had a very good chance to make it work.