Can delayed sport boost BBC’s premium VOD ambitions?

BBC Worldwide hopes people outside the UK will pay to subscribe to content including non-live sports.

It is using its rights to place the Grand National horse race, London Marathon and the Boat Race on the global version of its iPlayer service.

Although iPlayer in the UK offers free catch-up programming transmitted over the last seven days via multiple platforms, BBC Worldwide’s international version, available on iOS only, charges a monthly fee for a smörgåsbord of archive and recent programming for which BBC Worldwide has rights.

It will make these three sporting events available “within days” of their first UK broadcast. Since sport tends to trade on its live-ness, this will make the proposition challenging. The Grand National will be available on iPlayer in highlights form.

Global BBC iPlayer GM Matthew Littleford (via release): “Our subscribers wanted iconic British sport, and here they have it.”

BBC Worldwide still isn’t releasing figures indicating how well used the global iPlayer is, though Littleford tells StrategyEye it has hit its own targets. It still isn’t available in the U.S..