Kayo, Foxtel Now & Optus Sport Subcription Numbers

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The_Wookie

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Optus has revealed that its Optus Sport subscription numbers have reached 700,000 after Optus Sport enjoyed its most successful season ever across 2018-19 and broke many customer engagement and viewing records.

Optus has also announced it is introducing a $10 Optus Sport Add On* for Optus prepaid mobile customers. This new offer provides Optus’ large prepaid mobile customer base with access to the premium content available on Optus Sport for up to 28 days. This offer, alongside Optus’ extended football rights including the UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, UEFA Euro 2020 Championships and the Premier League, is expected to drive continued strong customer growth.

Media Release: Premier League Returns Exclusively Live To Optus Sport With A 5G World-First

Foxtel

As of June 30, 2019, Foxtel’s total closing subscribers were 3.144 million, which was 12% higher than the prior year, primarily due to the launch of Kayo, subscriber growth at Foxtel Now and the inclusion of commercial subscribers of Fox Sports Australia beginning in the first quarter of fiscal 2019, partially offset by lower broadcast subscribers.

Approximately 2.4 million of the total closing subscribers were broadcast and commercial subscribers, and the remainder consisted of Foxtel Now and Kayo subscribers. Following its launch in November 2018, Kayo grew over 8 months to reach 382,000 subscribers, of which around 331,000 were paying subscribers as of June 30, 2019.

Foxtel Now totalled 460,000 subscribers as of June 30, 2019, of which approximately 446,000 were paying subscribers, up 32% compared to the prior year.

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Messenger

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Reads like the switch from cable/satellite to streaming will reduce their revenue per customer, which might make the model more sustainable.
 

kaypee

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Reads like the switch from cable/satellite to streaming will reduce their revenue per customer, which might make the model more sustainable.
Also reads like fox etc have lost control of broadcast infrastructure, which means why is it even necessary? Kayo is just a rebranding of fox, but totally redundant. Sports can directly stream and tell third party providers to take a hike - or cough up.
Not sure what that means. Ideally the revolting back scratching that goes on between media companies and sports reduces and the spivs get banished. Wishful thinking no doubt.....
 

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Messenger

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Also reads like fox etc have lost control of broadcast infrastructure, which means why is it even necessary? Kayo is just a rebranding of fox, but totally redundant. Sports can directly stream and tell third party providers to take a hike - or cough up.
Not sure what that means. Ideally the revolting back scratching that goes on between media companies and sports reduces and the spivs get banished. Wishful thinking no doubt.....
Interestingly you can still buy a sports package on Foxtel Now.
 

jatz14

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Not sure you can read a lot into Optus' subscription numbers as they give them away with Optus mobile contracts. I'm an Optus sport "subscriber" but I haven't actually watched it yet. I might watch a bit of EPL if I can chromecast it.
Apparently they only counted active subscribers. If they counted all Optus contracts with Optus sports, it would be in the millions.
 

Rob

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Apparently they only counted active subscribers. If they counted all Optus contracts with Optus sports, it would be in the millions.
To subscribe, they sent me an email telling me to click once and create a password, and I had to download the app. Technically it's not automatic for that reason, but i'd expect there would be a lot of subscribers that wouldn't watch much.

It's certainly not comparable to a paid Kayo subscription.
 

Gigantor

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On top of what Rob has expressed above, the other thing I noticed about the "numbers" optus made public is that at no point are you able to make a like for like comparison re the ratings they get, as we measure them in TV land.

They'd have the data of course, but my guess is that it would look woeful compared to what SBS was getting last season (they've since lost that game).
 

The_Wookie

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Kayo releases sports fan engagement data
September 2, 2019

Media Release: https://media.kayosports.com.au/media-release/aussies-cant-get-enough-sport-on-kayo/

AUSSIES CAN’T GET ENOUGH SPORT ON KAYO

Kayo Sports today provided the first information on Australian sports fans’ engagement with the multi-sport streaming service, highlighted by over 25 million hours of content viewed in the three months to June 2019.

The release of Kayo’s viewer engagement highlights follows a recent update on subscriber growth which stated that, since Kayo’s launch in November 2018, subscriber numbers had grown to 382,000 as of 30 June, of which 331,000 were paying.

Kayo June Quarter Viewer Highlights
  • Time spent on Kayo reached approximately 8.5 hours of weekly user viewing in June driven by the Cricket World Cup with the average customer watching 6 of the 50 different sports available on Kayo each week.
  • The recent Cricket World Cup delivered Kayo its biggest audiences since launch with nearly 8 million hours of cricket content streamed across the six-week competition.
  • An average of 175,000 users watched Australia’s matches, with 187,000 users watching India’s matches.
  • The most watched game was the New Zealand v England final with 220,000 users, followed by the Australia v England match on 25 June with 219,000 users.
  • In addition, the India v Australia match on 9 June was the most streamed sporting event on Kayo with over 21 million minutes of viewing and watched by 214,000 users.
  • AFL fans are watching an average of 3.5 hours each week, with some regular season games reaching over 100,000 users including the West Coast v Richmond clash on 18 August watched by 130,000 users.
  • NRL fans were also watching an average of 3.5 hours each week, with some regular season games reaching nearly 70,000 users.
  • Rugby is already drawing large audiences ahead of this month’s Rugby World Cup with over 80,000 users watching the first Australia v New Zealand Bledisloe Cup Game on 10 August.
  • The NBA Finals drove big numbers on Kayo, highlighted by Raptors v Warriors Game 6 reaching 113,000 users.
  • In Tennis, Aussies got behind Ash Barty’s maiden Grand Slam victory with 64,000 users watching her take out Roland-Garros.
  • Formula 1 has also delivered impressive results, highlighted by over 75,000 users watching the German Grand Prix.
Source: Internal Kayo data.

Julian Ogrin, CEO of Kayo Sports said: “Aussie sports fans are loving the Kayo service. All their live sport, mixed with the biggest line-up of on demand content and features that make watching sport simply better, is driving huge engagement.

“To have streamed over 25 million hours of content in just three months with customers watching over 8 hours a week and cricket matches reaching 220,000 users is massive.

“For the India v Australia clash to deliver over 21 million minutes of streaming shows the potential of Kayo to reach a massive audience for a long period of time. This would be the most streamed sporting event in Australia this year.

“This is just the start. The FIBA Basketball World Cup is now in action and the Rugby World Cup is just around the corner. We also have an exciting summer of cricket with teams touring from Pakistan, New Zealand and Sri Lanka and the Women’s T20 World Cup. We can’t wait to serve up more of the Kayo experience with these big sporting events.

“The team has built a fantastic product and platform that can deliver an average of 400 live streamed, high-definition events across any weekend. And as more and more Aussies stream content, we will continue to optimise the service to ensure we are always delivering the highest streaming quality possible.
“We are also working on the complex task of combining Kayo’s user viewing numbers with Foxtel’s OzTAM viewer data to show the combined reach for the purpose of engaging with advertisers.
kayo-highlights-2-.jpg
kayo-highlights-1-.jpg
Kayo-Event-Highlights_Q4-2019_cropped.png

“For example, the Richmond v West Coast AFL match on 18 August reached an audience of 628,000 across FOX SPORTS, Foxtel Now and Foxtel GO, making it the third most watched Sunday game on Foxtel this season.# When you add Kayo’s 130,000 unique users, the Foxtel Group is reaching a very large and diverse audience,” said Mr Ogrin.
 

jatz14

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Kayo releases sports fan engagement data
September 2, 2019

Media Release: https://media.kayosports.com.au/media-release/aussies-cant-get-enough-sport-on-kayo/

AUSSIES CAN’T GET ENOUGH SPORT ON KAYO

Kayo Sports today provided the first information on Australian sports fans’ engagement with the multi-sport streaming service, highlighted by over 25 million hours of content viewed in the three months to June 2019.

The release of Kayo’s viewer engagement highlights follows a recent update on subscriber growth which stated that, since Kayo’s launch in November 2018, subscriber numbers had grown to 382,000 as of 30 June, of which 331,000 were paying.

Kayo June Quarter Viewer Highlights
  • Time spent on Kayo reached approximately 8.5 hours of weekly user viewing in June driven by the Cricket World Cup with the average customer watching 6 of the 50 different sports available on Kayo each week.
  • The recent Cricket World Cup delivered Kayo its biggest audiences since launch with nearly 8 million hours of cricket content streamed across the six-week competition.
  • An average of 175,000 users watched Australia’s matches, with 187,000 users watching India’s matches.
  • The most watched game was the New Zealand v England final with 220,000 users, followed by the Australia v England match on 25 June with 219,000 users.
  • In addition, the India v Australia match on 9 June was the most streamed sporting event on Kayo with over 21 million minutes of viewing and watched by 214,000 users.
  • AFL fans are watching an average of 3.5 hours each week, with some regular season games reaching over 100,000 users including the West Coast v Richmond clash on 18 August watched by 130,000 users.
  • NRL fans were also watching an average of 3.5 hours each week, with some regular season games reaching nearly 70,000 users.
  • Rugby is already drawing large audiences ahead of this month’s Rugby World Cup with over 80,000 users watching the first Australia v New Zealand Bledisloe Cup Game on 10 August.
  • The NBA Finals drove big numbers on Kayo, highlighted by Raptors v Warriors Game 6 reaching 113,000 users.
  • In Tennis, Aussies got behind Ash Barty’s maiden Grand Slam victory with 64,000 users watching her take out Roland-Garros.
  • Formula 1 has also delivered impressive results, highlighted by over 75,000 users watching the German Grand Prix.
Source: Internal Kayo data.

Julian Ogrin, CEO of Kayo Sports said: “Aussie sports fans are loving the Kayo service. All their live sport, mixed with the biggest line-up of on demand content and features that make watching sport simply better, is driving huge engagement.

“To have streamed over 25 million hours of content in just three months with customers watching over 8 hours a week and cricket matches reaching 220,000 users is massive.

“For the India v Australia clash to deliver over 21 million minutes of streaming shows the potential of Kayo to reach a massive audience for a long period of time. This would be the most streamed sporting event in Australia this year.

“This is just the start. The FIBA Basketball World Cup is now in action and the Rugby World Cup is just around the corner. We also have an exciting summer of cricket with teams touring from Pakistan, New Zealand and Sri Lanka and the Women’s T20 World Cup. We can’t wait to serve up more of the Kayo experience with these big sporting events.

“The team has built a fantastic product and platform that can deliver an average of 400 live streamed, high-definition events across any weekend. And as more and more Aussies stream content, we will continue to optimise the service to ensure we are always delivering the highest streaming quality possible.
“We are also working on the complex task of combining Kayo’s user viewing numbers with Foxtel’s OzTAM viewer data to show the combined reach for the purpose of engaging with advertisers.
View attachment 738665View attachment 738666View attachment 738667
“For example, the Richmond v West Coast AFL match on 18 August reached an audience of 628,000 across FOX SPORTS, Foxtel Now and Foxtel GO, making it the third most watched Sunday game on Foxtel this season.# When you add Kayo’s 130,000 unique users, the Foxtel Group is reaching a very large and diverse audience,” said Mr Ogrin.
Not sure that AFL being well watched on Kayo is good or not.

I suspect Fox makes less profit from Kayo, so wholesale switching may put downward pressure on rights deals.

However, it's also clear the big sports are driving Kayo subscription, it doesn't work without them. However, however, it may still work with 1 or 2 less, running the risk kayo walks away if the price is not right.

I noted a lack of A league, possibly putting to bed the 'A league fans are young and hip and new media, where AFL and NRL are old and stodgy and obsolete Media' justification for A leagues poor ratings.

Sent from my XT1068 using Tapatalk
 

The_Wookie

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Not sure that AFL being well watched on Kayo is good or not.

I suspect Fox makes less profit from Kayo, so wholesale switching may put downward pressure on rights deals.

However, it's also clear the big sports are driving Kayo subscription, it doesn't work without them. However, however, it may still work with 1 or 2 less, running the risk kayo walks away if the price is not right.

I noted a lack of A league, possibly putting to bed the 'A league fans are young and hip and new media, where AFL and NRL are old and stodgy and obsolete Media' justification for A leagues poor ratings.

Sent from my XT1068 using Tapatalk
see what the new season brings. most of the growth happened as their season was ending and the winter codes were starting.
 

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kreglze

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Not sure that AFL being well watched on Kayo is good or not.

I suspect Fox makes less profit from Kayo, so wholesale switching may put downward pressure on rights deals.

However, it's also clear the big sports are driving Kayo subscription, it doesn't work without them. However, however, it may still work with 1 or 2 less, running the risk kayo walks away if the price is not right.

I noted a lack of A league, possibly putting to bed the 'A league fans are young and hip and new media, where AFL and NRL are old and stodgy and obsolete Media' justification for A leagues poor ratings.

Sent from my XT1068 using Tapatalk
Don’t see the a-league getting much of a mention.
If these stats were recent, the A League season has been finished since March (I think?) and doesn't start for another month or so.
 

Gigantor

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And yet kayo was launched near the start of the a league season....and was a common excuse for the ratings collapse
That's right. When Fox ratings were regularly bouncing around the 10k mark, there was a great collective hope that another 50k were lurking on Kayo.
 

The_Wookie

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Mobile and Live Pass Data

Here’s the streaming stats released by the AFL:

  • In total, 403 million minutes of AFL were streamed in 2019 to the end of the regular season, up 10% on last year
  • Streaming on the AFL’s official app and Telstra Live Pass recorded its biggest ever weekend in Round 22 (in terms of minutes streamed) – surpassing the previous record (Round 22, 2018), up 19%
  • The biggest single streamed match in 2019 was when Richmond edged out West Coast in Round 22 - almost 7 million minutes streamed
  • Victorians accounted for 41% of all devices streaming AFL matches – the most of any state or territory
  • Collingwood was the most streamed team at 57.4 million minutes watched in the AFL official app and Telstra live pass
  • Following Collingwood defending premiers West Coast Eagles showed strong support in second place, with their matches being streamed for 51.9 million minutes, narrowly eclipsing Carlton with 51.8 million minutes
  • The number of Telstra Live Pass subscribers has surpassed the three million mark for the first time, currently at 3.2m up 29% on the same time last year.


 

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kayo-fined-by-accc-for-subscription-promotion-608777

Foxtel’s sports streaming service Kayo has paid a penalty for what the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) alleges was a misleading promotion.

Between March and April this year, Kayo pushed its basic subscription package to Telstra customers, saying they could have two months access’ for just $5.

“We were concerned that Kayo’s website did not adequately disclose the offer was only available to Telstra customers who had not previously used Kayo,” ACCC deputy chair Delia Rickard said.

“The eligibility requirement appeared in small print on Kayo’s website and was significantly less prominent than the headline offer.
 

The_Wookie

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Foxtel/Kayo
https://twitter.com/footyindustryAU
https://twitter.com/footyindustryAU/status/1225586034009722880

Paying Kayo Subcriptions as reported in News Corp Quarterly results and the 2019 Annual Report.
View image on Twitter
https://twitter.com/footyindustryAU



As of December 31, 2019, Foxtel’s total closing subscribers were 2.952m, an increase of 3% compared to 2018, primarily due to subscriber growth at Kayo, partially offset by lower broadcast subscribers.

As of December 31, 2019, there were 372,000 Kayo subscribers, of which 350,000 were paying subscribers, compared to 72,000 subscribers (42,000 paying) in the prior year. As of February 5th, there were more than 370,000 paying Kayo subscribers.

As of December 31, 2019, there were 343,000 Foxtel Now subscribers, of which 334,000 were paying subscribers, compared to 358,000 subscribers (354,000 paying) in the prior year. (Note: Foxtel Now is a streaming service that can include sport as well as entertainment)

Optus Sport
https://twitter.com/clivedickens/status/1225203837230669825



‘Active Subscribing Accounts rose to 825,000 up from 700,000 in August last year.

Optus Sport successfully launched Season 4 of the 2019/20 English Premier League with audience engagement increasing 42% compared to the same quarter last year.
 

RussellEbertHandball

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Max Mason AFR's Media and Marketing Editor, has written 3 sports stories in today's paper. 2 are about Kayo ad Foxtel and will post here and the other one about AFL looking to extend the current broadcasting deal with current broadcasters in the next media rights thread.

First article, News Corp reckon cricket is responsible for the big drop in subscribers the last 3 months.

Kayo Strike rate puts heat on Foxtel (paper headline)
News Corp chief executive Robert Thomson has blamed cricket for the shock slump in subscribers for Foxtel's sports streaming service, Kayo, a little over a year after its launch. Kayo – identified as the pay television platform's growth pillar – delivered a disappointing result for Foxtel at News Corp's financial results on Friday, sliding 32,000 paying subscribers between November 5 and February 5.

"As you know, we are very much in the low sports season in Australia. Cricket, fascinating, sometimes antediluvian as it can be is not as compelling for crowds in Australia as Aussie rules and rugby league," Mr Thomson said when asked whether Kayo had reached full penetration. "But cricket has certainly made a positive difference to audience retention, but the winter sports in Australia are about congregation and audience aggregation and we're on the cusp of that selling season.” The disappointing result comes off the back of a summer cricket season which included touring teams Pakistan and New Zealand – the second year of Foxtel's share of Cricket Australia's $1.18 billion broadcast rights deal.

Foxtel will be hoping for better summers to come with India and England to tour the next two seasons as well as a boost from the upcoming NRL and AFL seasons. On Friday, News Corp, which owns 65 per cent of Foxtel, revealed Kayo had more than 370,000 paying subscribers as of February 5. This compared with more than 402,000 as of November 5, 2019. However, this was more than the 42,000 paying subscribers it had at the end of December 2018.

The result is likely to compound the pressure on Foxtel, which saw subscriber churn on its traditional broadcast business rise to 16 per cent for the December quarter, from 14.4 per cent in the September quarter. Foxtel's broadcast and commercial subscriber base sat at 2.268 million as of December 31, down from 2.326 million in the September quarter.

Foxtel Now – a streaming version of Foxtel's traditional broadcast business – had 334,000 paying subscribers as of December 31, down from 375,000 in the previous quarter. Foxtel Now was expected to come under pressure following the end of Game of Thrones in the middle of the year.

A sluggish Australian economy only exacerbated Foxtel's financial crunch. Revenue fell $US61 million($90.6 million) in the quarter, or 11 per cent, $US25 million of which was due to currency fluctuations. Adjusted revenue fell 6 per cent to $US526 million. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation fell 17 per cent.

News Corp also revealed Foxtel now has another shareholder loan, but this time from Telstra, which owns 35 per cent of Foxtel. In February, Telstra extended Foxtel a $170 million loan in order for Foxtel to pay Telstra the fees it pays for using its cables to deliver pay TV to consumers. The Telstra facility has been locked in at a 7.75 per cent interest rate.

It comes after a major refinancing of Foxtel's debt which included News Corp tipping in $900 million worth of facilities, including $700 million of debt in late 2019.

It also locked in a further $900 million of facilities from about a dozen local and international banks, and a $500 million US private debt placement. While News Corp hasn't provided information around what interest rate Foxtel is paying on its shareholder or bank loans, it did reveal in August that a $200 million shareholder loan from May had a variable interest rate of 9 per cent. When the initial $300 million loan News Corp gave Foxtel in April is taken into account, Foxtel in 2018-19 paid News Corp nearly $10 million in interest on those loans. Overall, News Corp's profit for the quarter slipped $US10 million compared to the same time last year, to $US85 million.
Kayo loses subscribers, pressure increases on Foxtel (online headline)

The other article

Kayo on a sticky wicket as Foxtel and News Corp's cricket bet fails to pay off (paper headline)

Whether Kayo's shock slump is a hiccup or something more remains to be seen, but Foxtel and News Corp executives will be sweating on their $105 million per year bet on cricket. Deep in the release of News Corp's results on Friday, it was revealed Kayo, the sports streaming service that has been identified as a core pillar of Foxtel's future, showed a decline leading into the end of 2019.

This is despite the companies forking out millions for cricket, which was to be a key acquisition driver to mitigate summer churn on Foxtel and boost Kayo, which launched in November 2018. News Corp chief executive Robert Thomson downplayed Kayo's slump, pointing to the AFL and NRL seasons as the key drivers of growth and delivering cricket a yorker, labelling it not as compelling as the winter codes.

But stumping up more than $100 million a year for something that didn't drive growth isn't a good sign. The next two summers will surely be more successful, with India followed by England touring for the Ashes.
...............

The slide is worrying for Foxtel. Kayo, unlike every other streaming service in Australia, faces no direct competition. No other service has anything close to the suite of sports rights Foxtel has amassed over the last half decade. The problem is Foxtel has paid through the nose for those rights. The Murdoch-controlled pay TV business spends around $800 million a year on sports rights and production.

Record deals for NRL, AFL, Cricket Australia and Rugby Australia since 2015 have all been driven by Foxtel's aggressive bid to get every game live. Foxtel is no longer the cash cow it once was and a year-long struggle to refinance the business has led to more than $700 million in shareholder loans from News Corp just to get a new debt deal done with banks. On Friday, it was also revealed Telstra, which owns 35 per cent of Foxtel, has loaned the pay TV business $170 million so it can continue to pay the telecommunications giant fees for using its cables to deliver its service.

All this comes as Rugby Australia prepares to take its broadcast rights to tender for the first time. It reportedly turned down a $20 million per year deal to test the market and News Corp has begun its posturing through its newspapers, including The Australian and The Daily Telegraph.

Sports broadcast rights are a perverse investment and the advertising revenue they bring in no longer matches what broadcasters pay for the rights. Consumer media has moved into an unprecedented era of choice, where the so-called halo effect - where broadcasters could justify sports rights because viewers would stay on the network and watch other programs (and viewing more ads) - has become harder to prove.

Australia's sporting bodies face an uncertain future with regards to their broadcast rights with Foxtel and, as demonstrated by Rugby Australia, they're clearly looking for alternatives.

Rugby Australia will be reading into Foxtel's Kayo numbers with interest, noting growth between September 30 and November 5 of 27,000 paying subscribers, right in the middle of the Rugby World Cup, as well as an increase of 20,000 paying subscribers between December 31 and February 5, a period which saw the Super Rugby season kick off on January 31.
.......
Kayo has faltered and that's worrying for Foxtel (online headline)
 

NoobPie

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You can see what Foxtel was trying to do with the cricket rights and with Kayo but ultimately I agree wit h the foxtel CEO. Particularly the big bash is just not worth paying money for

People subscribe for the AFL and NRL because their level of engagement is such that they are willing to pay to watch it. I don't think that is the case with the BBL and only the case with the more serious cricket fans for one day internationals.

That said I am sure cricket has helped retain some of the subscribers at the margin that might otherwise have stopped their subscription.

The news is more bad news for the A league. It is clear as hell they haven't been jumping on Kayo in big numbers like some of the more deluded a league fans had convinced them selves. Can anyone remember any thing from kayo / foxtel that even mentions soccer?

It will be interesting to see what happens with Kayo going in to the upcoming AFL and NRL seasons. I suspect there will be a ratcheting pattern over the first few years with a slight drop off over the summer but more footy fans getting on board each year
 

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