Ryder Cup Draws Record Streaming

The Ryder Cup was a success for Europe, something of a disaster for the US especially in the aftermath of defeat and a record breaker in terms of the way that it was consumed.

A total of 11.1 million minutes of the action from Paris were streamed over the course of the Singles matches that brought the tournament to a conclusion on Sunday.

That represents a 58 percent increase on the same figure from Hazeltine in 2016 and almost 700 percent up on the last time the event was staged in Europe, at Gleneagles in Scotland in 2014.

The time differences of staging in Europe and the US, with one broadcasting to away fans in the early morning and the other in prime time evening slot have an impact on the mainstream TV viewing but even here 2018 proved a winner with NBC reporting average viewership of 2.71 million across the more than five hours of broadcast on the final day.

This represents a 23 percent increase on Scotland 2014 and the first two days were up as well, by 12 and 21 percent respectively.

The tournament was broadcast exclusively here on Sky Sports for which figures are naturally lower than they would be if coverage was on terrestrial TV.

They were boosted by a major push through cross-media sponsorship of Newstalk among other media, of the NowTV platform which enabled viewers to buy in to the Sky coverage on a day by day basis, without any contract.

Sky’s latest deal with the European Tour is up for renewal at the end of this year and there are whispers that a broader base of broadcast coverage would be desirable in order to boost interest in the sport among younger viewers.

Whether the format of the game is suitable for mainstream broadcast taking up ten hours a day over four days is open to question but it will be interesting to see how the contract negotiations play out.



Image Credit: Oisin Kenniry, Inpho.ie

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