MultiChoice Group still holds WWE broadcast rights, despite Netflix acquiring them in some international markets.
MultiChoice Group has confirmed that subsidiary SuperSport will continue to broadcast World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) shows and live events to its subscribers in sub-Saharan Africa.
This follows the announcement last week by US streaming giant Netflix that it had acquired the broadcasting rights for WWE shows and specials in the US, Canada, Latin America and other international markets.
“WWE events, including Raw, Smackdown, NXT, Wrestlemania, SummerSlam and Royal Rumble, will continue being available on … SuperSport,” MultiChoice said on Monday in a statement to TechCentral.
SuperSport has held the local broadcast rights since 2017. Prior to that, South African viewers could watch WWE Raw, Smackdown and NXT on free-to-air channel e.tv. In 2019, MultiChoice negotiated with the WWE to expand its broadcast rights, leading to a wider array of wrestling content being broadcast through its SuperSport platform.
Netflix’s acquisition of WWE rights in certain markets represents the ongoing shift from traditional broadcasting to streaming that now sees live sporting events also migrating to internet-based platforms. Showmax, another MultiChoice subsidiary, recently added a standalone English Premier League package to its offerings.
In contrast to the three hours of live wrestling a week that Netflix has promised its subscribers in certain international markets, SuperSport includes a 24-hour dedicated channel to what WWE founder Vince McMahon refers to as “sports entertainment”.
Read: Netflix buys rights to WWE Raw in pivot to live events
The channel includes archive content, allowing long-term fans of the medium to watch classic shows that feature WWE stars from years gone by, including Eddie “Viva la Rasa” Guerrero, John “You Can’t See Me” Cena and the rough-and-tumble “Stone Cold” Steve Austin. — (c) 2024 NewsCentral Media
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