Three of the world’s biggest social media networks are in talks to stream video highlights of next year’s soccer World Cup, according to Bloomberg.
Facebook (FB), Twitter (TWTR) and Snapchat owner Snap Inc. (SNAP) have offered 21st Century Fox (FOX), tens of millions of dollars for the rights to highlights packages from the tournament, which is the world’s most commercially valuable sporting event after the Olympic Games.
Fox, which has a multi-year deal for the U.S. broadcasting rights to FIFA’s flagship tournament, hasn’t decided whether to sell exclusive rights to one buyer or to negotiate multiple deals, according to Bloomberg.
The World Cup would be a logical addition for streaming by social media networks, which have struck a number of similar deals for the Olympics (Snapchat), the NFL (Twitter) and the UEFA Champions League (Facebook). However, none of them will be able to strike a global deal for streaming rights, as FIFA contracts individually with national broadcasters, in a format which also gives them rights to online distribution in their respective countries.
FIFA and Kantar Media estimated that over 1 billion people worldwide watched the 2014 World Cup final between Germany and Argentina. Only 25 million of them were in the U.S., however.
More importantly for the likes of Facebook and Snap, FIFA estimates that 280 million people watched games from the 2014 tournament online or on a mobile device.