Ahead of the start of the 2023/2024 football season, the TNT Sports brand will replace the BT Sport moniker in the UK and Ireland from Tuesday under a rebrand introduced earlier in the year by joint venture partners Warner Bros. Discovery and telecommunications giant BT. “Vowing to become the ultimate home for sports fans, TNT Sports heralds the most significant change in the sports broadcast landscape in the last decade,” the partners promised, highlighting a focus on live sports.
Warner Bros. Discovery streamer Discovery+ becomes the streaming destination for TNT Sports in the UK, in addition to sports already offered on Eurosport, bringing consumers sporting events and entertainment under a new “premium plan” with priced at £29.99 per month ($39.23), the same price previously charged for the BT Sport Monthly Pass.
TNT Sports is available on all the major pay-TV platforms, including BT TV, Sky and Virgin Media. Existing BT Sport customers can watch TNT Sports without having to do anything else.
“TNT Sports launches with a contemporary new brand, a fabulous and exciting lineup of new talent, great value for viewers and flexible ways to shop and watch,” said Andrew Georgiou, joint venture board member and chairman. and manager. Director, Warner Bros. Discovery Sports Europe. “Starting today, fans can watch TNT Sports in the same places they enjoyed BT Sport and without any interruption to their access. Plus, with TNT Sports now on Discovery+ in the UK, we can start offering a simple and even more compelling offering that appeals to the whole family, combining more live sports with entertainment. We believe this is an exceptional value proposition for fans that offers an engaging blend of sports and entertainment that is unique to Discovery+.”
In February, he noted that the TNT Sports name “is already synonymous with premium live sports in multiple countries around the world,” making the rebranding “another sign of the global scale and expertise that Warner Bros. Bros. Discovery brings to your partnership. with BT.”
Georgiou has also previously highlighted that the TNT Sports name is still little known in Britain and Ireland, but described this as an opportunity. “This is a clean slate. There are people in the industry who might know the legacy of what the letters TNT stand for or what TNT stands for in the US or Latin America, but the British and Irish consumer has no idea,” he said. “So for them, this is a clean slate, and having that clean slate for us means being able to make sure that we can infuse this brand over time” with principles such as a broad, global sports portfolio.
By bringing together the content portfolios of the two partners, TNT Sports “will offer one of the broadest lineups of live sports coverage for fans in the UK and Ireland, including the Olympic Games, the Premier League (English), UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, Premiership Rugby, MotoGP, UFC, Boxing, WWE, Tennis Grand Slams, Grand Cycling Tours and the winter sports season”, the partners have underlined.
Another key part of the new brand is a revamped lineup of talent, including hosts and hosts like Laura Woods, Reshmin Chowdhury and Jules Breach, providing more female voices in more key roles.
The 50:50 BT and Warner Bros. Discovery joint venture was formed on September 1. Warner Bros. Discovery manages its operation, with the production and operating assets of BT Sport transferred to the company.
PP Foresight analyst Paolo Pescatore highlighted key opportunities and challenges for venture partners and their rebranding. “Initially, there will be resentment as it will feel like another sports brand entering the UK market in an increasingly fragmented world,” he warned. “During a cost of living crisis, this could give people a reason to cancel. So all focus needs to be on positioning and adding greater value for sports fans as part of the Discovery+ umbrella.”
He also described the rebranding as a “key step in a long journey with other bumps to overcome.” For example, “maintaining key sports rights will continue to be very important to help with this transition for years to come,” Pescatore noted. “All eyes now turn to the Premier League, where the entity needs to develop its current portfolio.”
But the analyst also noted that “sports will now begin to become a key differentiator for Discovery+ with the goal of offering users everything in one place.”
Pescatore further highlighted the more diverse group of talent on air after the rebrand. “The reinvented talent lineup, which is more inclusive and diverse, will help connect with different audiences,” she said. THR. “There is a clear desire to ensure programming is less male-dominated, a challenge when it comes to (football) at times.” The pundit called the goals “brand accessibility, humor and fun,” with on-air talent who are “passionate, (have) an energetic way, love what they do.”
While starting with a “clean slate” provides an opportunity “to simplify the overall sports experience for fans in the long term,” the expert also emphasized “numerous short-term challenges in managing a multi-brand strategy that the new entity is fully involved.” aware and will have to navigate carefully.” And Pescatore concluded: “It will be interesting to see how TNT Sports will be able to leverage other assets within the broader Warner Bros. Discovery family, including CNN, for example, in cross-promotional content,” such as sports documentaries.