FC Bayern Munich positioned itself, once again, as one of the most forward-thinking teams in sports, announcing an international content sharing agreement with ESPN.
The partnership, the first of its kind between ESPN and a global sports team, grants the media company the rights to share Bayern’s video content in English and Spanish across its platforms. In turn, the German club will provide ESPN with content including behind-the-scenes videos, access-driven features, pre and post-match reports, press briefings, a team travelogue, and more.
Bayern has been investing heavily in the American market and as the club’s presence continues to grow, a partnership with ESPN makes sense.
“ESPN is one of the world’s leading sports entertainment company with an impressive audience,” said FC Bayern Munich President of the Americas, Rudolf Vidal. “Since opening our first international office in the U.S. our mission has always been to bring the club closer to followers across the Americas, and ESPN’s reach and storytelling is an ideal platform to connect and service our family of fans.”
Through the partnership, content from Bayern will reach audiences in the United States, Canada, Latin America, and the Caribbean, and air on a variety of ESPN’s English and Spanish shows including SportsCenter, Fútbol Picant, as Nación ESPN as well as the ESPN+ streaming service, the ESPN App and ESPN.com.
Soccer has been growing rapidly in the U.S. and this alliance allows ESPN the opportunity to increase its presence in this in-demand space through the most successful sports team in German history.
“As one of the most successful clubs in European Football, Bayern Munich is a dominant global brand in the sport,” said Scott Guglielmino, ESPN Senior Vice President, Programming and Acquisitions. “This agreement provides ESPN with access to original content directly from Bayern Munich and will allow us to better serve soccer fans throughout the year.”
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The timing of the deal couldn’t be better. ESPN is the official broadcaster of the International Champions Cup taking place this summer and will air both of Bayern’s ICC games on its channels. With the new partnership in place, one can only expect there will be some great Bayern analysis and behind the scenes content stemming from the tour as well.
Bayern has never hesitated to think outside the box when it comes to finding new ways to engage with its fans. Last year, the club launched an AR fan experience within the FC Bayern Munich app and were the first sports team to establish a partnership with Tenor, a mobile GIF-sharing platform that has since been acquired by Google.
Using this fearless mentality, Bayern has helped not only its own club, but the Bundesliga as a whole, grow in the Americas in recent years. It has developed an engaging presence on their U.S. and Spanish social channels, launched the FC Bayern Fan Club Roadshow, and worked to make German soccer content more accessible in the States. This partnership is a natural next step in Bayern’s mission to grow soccer in the Americas as it gives the fan base it has worked so hard to cultivate increased access to content on ESPN, one of the most popular sports entertainment companies in the world.