PwC Sees Strong Gains in U.S. Sports Rights Market


NEW YORK: Media rights will be the largest contributor to sports revenues in North America by 2018, PwC reports, with live streaming helping to fuel competition in the sector.

At the Gate and Beyond explores the North American sports market through 2020. PwC valued the North American sports market at $63.9 billion in 2015, forecasting this will rise to $75.7 billion in 2020. The gains are being powered by media rights—with a 5.5 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR)—and sponsorships, with a 3.9 percent CAGR.

Media rights are projected to surpass gate revenues (ticket sales) as the industry’s largest segment by 2018. By 2020, media rights are forecasted to bring in $21.3 billion, up from $16.3 billion in 2015, inching past gate revenues. PwC reports that broadcast rights will remain a priority through the next deal cycle, but digital and immersive platforms are becoming more important.

Gate revenues are the second-largest contributor, followed by sponsorships, which are set to hit $18.7 billion in 2020.