Warner Bros. Discovery Sports (WBDS) has reported double-digit audience and engagement growth on all its channels and platforms so far in 2022.
The broadcaster and streamer is crediting its performance on a combination of a blockbuster line-up of live sport, an enhanced discovery+ user experience and a refreshed look for its Eurosport channels.
Channel highlights include the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022, the year’s first two tennis Grand Slams, the road cycling season featuring the first Grand Tour of the year, the Giro d’Italia, and a range of new rights for 2022.
In Europe and international markets, linear television audiences have increased 10% year-on-year (vs H1 2021) across Eurosport and Warner Bros. Discovery’s free-to-air networks in Europe that present live sport.
Television audiences on Eurosport channels and sport on free-to-air are up in all major markets including France (+23%), Italy (+19%), Poland (+18%), Spain (+46%) and the U.K. (+12%). Sports coverage on the channels, including Eurosport 1 and Eurosport 2, are also attracting more of the available viewers with an average 12% rise in audience share.
discovery+ has led the way in more people streaming live sport and on-demand shoulder content. Unique streaming viewers have increased almost a quarter (+24% vs 2021) across all services, including the Eurosport App, during the first half of the year, while almost half as many more video views (+49%) were added versus the same period in 2021.
Sport on discovery+ has seen a significant uplift (+50%) compared to the first half of last year, as video views more than doubled (+149%)and streaming minutes more than tripled (+213%).
Andrew Georgiou, President & Managing Director, Warner Bros. Discovery Sports Europe, said: “The significant growth in audience and engagement we’ve seen this year is a testament to our strategy of making content available in whatever way viewers choose to watch.
“Throughout Europe we are unique in how we are able to engage audiences across our free-to-air, payTV and streaming platforms – serving all audience segments, from diehard to more casual fans and ‘big eventers’. In this way, we’ve continued to grow our television audiences whilst also seeing a rapid rise in people streaming live sport on discovery+ and our digital services.”