3 QUESTIONS WITH PETER HUTTON CEO, EUROSPORT
Peter Hutton was appointed chief executive officer of Eurosport in January, overseeing the negotiation of sports rights as well as content strategy and local infrastructure and teams for the business. A sports industry veteran with more than 30 years of experience, Hutton has brought a renewed focus to programming, production, promotion and platforms for the business and was instrumental in Discovery and Eurosport’s recent acquisition of all rights to the Olympic Games.
1. Tell us a little bit about the OLYMPICS deal.
Discovery and Eurosport are the new home of the Olympics in Europe! The European TV and multiplatform broadcast rights agreement covers the Summer and Winter Olympic Games from 2018 to 2024. It also gives us the opportunity to use the Olympic archive beginning in 2016 and to take advantage of Eurosport’s # 1 online sports destination – Eurosport.com – and leading OTT service - the Eurosport Player - to work closely with the IOC on the rollout of the Olympic Channel.
The response to the successful bid has been fantastic. The whole industry is talking about the deal and clearly understands its strategic benefits. Now we have the task of delivering a really excellent product that will be in keeping with both our and the Olympic Committee’s high standards.
2. Why did Discovery decide to pursue the Olympics?
Discovery and the IOC have a shared vision, and Discovery’s 30-year history of being the global leader in non-fiction content makes the company uniquely positioned to capture and deliver the remarkable stories and characters associated with the Games not just every two years, but every year and throughout the year. With Eurosport’s proud and long-standing tradition of broadcasting many winter and summer sports showcased during the Olympics, adding the Olympic Games, the greatest live event in the world, is a perfect editorial and strategic fit.
Our investment also will go back into the sports industry. The IOC redistributes more than 90% of its income to the wider sporting movement, which means that every day the equivalent of $3.25 million goes to help athletes and sports organizations at all levels around the world. That contribution helps all of the federations that we work with every day.
3. How CAN DISCOVERY leverage Eurosport to maximize Olympic coverage across Europe?
We are going to make sure that more live content is available across multiple platforms during the events. Eurosport television channels, Eurosport Player, EurosportNews, Eurosport.com and Eurosport 360 will all be important parts of that strategy.
We also have an advantage in that nearly half of Eurosport’s existing programming schedule is already comprised of the very sports that will be featured in the Olympic Games, which gives us the opportunity to tell a consistent and compelling story across all of our platforms. Fans will be able to follow their local heroes as they train and compete in the championships and leagues leading up to the Games. We’re going to keep the Olympic flame burning all year.