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Discovery+ Streaming Platform Drove Record Beijing Winter Olympics Viewership in Europe

Discovery Feb. 23 reported record Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games viewership and engagement on its digital platforms, as the household appeal of the media company’s Discovery+ subscription streaming video platform drove 50% higher viewer consumption compared to the South Korea PyeongChang Winter Olympics 2018.

The Discovery+ streaming service launched in January 2021.

While Comcast/NBC Sports has exclusive U.S. rights to the broadcast and digital distribution of the Winter and Summer Olympic Games, Discovery has the European distribution rights. Beijing 2022 was available to watch on Discovery+ in Denmark, Finland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom. In all other European markets, except Russia, Beijing 2022 was available on Discovery-owned Eurosport’s digital services.

Discovery presented Olympic Winter Games in 50 markets in Europe featuring 11 national productions and coverage in 19 languages.

More than 156 million Europeans visited Discovery’s platforms with more than 1 billion streaming minutes consumed, 19 times more than the last Olympic Winter Games. Discovery+ and Eurosport streaming services saw eight times more streaming viewers during the Games as users consumed more than double the content with average consumption exceeding seven hours per viewer. The same trend was seen on linear television with viewers on average watching 24% longer than PyeongChang 2018.

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Ad-supported Eurosport.com, and its local country editions, reached more than double the number of users compared to the same period.

Building on a strong first week, Eurosport’s average linear audiences remained resilient and were in line with the last winter edition despite double digit reductions in total TV usage since 2018. High audience shares on Discovery’s free-to-air networks in the Nordic markets continued with highs of 88% (Norway), 83% (Sweden) and 82% (Finland).

Eurosport channels saw significant audience and share growth in many key markets — including Poland (up 36%), Romania (up 23%) and Italy (up 250%) — and Discovery’s channels across both free-to-air and pay-TV saw an overall increase in audience share.

“The Winter Olympics has proven to be a terrific success for discovery+ and all our channels and platforms across Europe,” Jean-Briac Perrette, CEO of Discovery streaming and international, said in a statement. “Well over half of all new Olympics subscribers also enjoyed Discovery+’s entertainment content, reinforcing the increased depth and value of our offering. These subscribers remain engaged and retained for longer, which meaningfully improves subscriber lifetime value.”

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