Sinclair Broadcast Group is close to securing deals to air NBA games on its new streaming service, along with $600 million of financing to support the expansion, according to Bloomberg.
The deal would provide Sinclair’s sports network unit, Diamond Sports Group, with regional digital rights to the NBA, adding to the broadcast rights Sinclair already owns.
The funding would also help Diamond develop the new streaming app in the first half of 2022 as it manages $8.1 billion in debt, a byproduct of its sale to Sinclair in 2019 and a recent drop in viewership.
Sinclair has joined forces with Bally’s Corp. to combat the losses in the last couple years.
- In November 2020, it secured a naming rights deal with Bally Sports for $85 million over 10 years to hold its 21 sports networks under the Bally name.
- That same month, Bally’s acquired sports betting platform Bet.Works in a deal valued at $125 million.
- In March 2021, Bally’s completed its acquisition of free-to-play sports game provider Monkey Knight Fight for roughly $90 million.
Present and Future
Sinclair posted $1.5 billion in revenue in Q3 2021, the same amount generated in Q3 2020.
The flat performance was the result of declines in subscribers and advertising revenue, which dropped to $446 million during the quarter, an 11% decrease year-over-year.
Sinclair, which currently owns TV rights for 16 NBA teams, projects 4.4 million streaming customers by 2027.