Discovery’s Eurosport Pacts With Snapchat for 2018 Winter Olympics

PyeongChang Winter Olympics
The Yomiuri Shimbun via AP Images

Discovery CommunicationsEurosport is turning to Snapchat to squeeze more coin out of its European rights for the Olympic Games — and, it’s hoping, reach younger audiences who may be tuning out TV.

Eurosport, which owns the TV and multimedia rights to the 2018-24 Olympics, announced an advertising and content agreement with Snap for the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang, South Korea. Discovery CEO David Zaslav had talked up plans for a Snapchat channel for the Olympics at the programmer’s upfront this spring.

Similarly, NBC, holder of the U.S. media rights for the Olympics, plans to work with BuzzFeed to co-produce content for Snapchat for the 2018 Winter Games, after the trio teamed in Rio for the 2016 Summer Olympics.

The first-of-its kind deal for Snap will cover multiple languages and span multiple countries. Discovery’s ad sales teams in Europe will be able to sell Snap advertising packages.

Content under the partnership will include Olympics-related Our Stories, posts curated from snaps submitted by Snapchat users. In addition, Eurosport will create Publisher Stories, which are magazine-like Stories produced by media publishers. A team of Snapchat editors will create original content for the PeyongChang games, combined with Eurosport’s footage.

Discovery has previously worked with Snapchat. That included reimagining its Shark Week franchise as a show on the app, which drew over 17 million viewers in July. “We’re thrilled to be expanding our partnership to give Snapchatters across Europe the best Olympic Games experience possible,” Ben Schwerin, Snap’s VP of partnerships, said in a statement.

According to Snap, Snapchat has an average of 57 million daily active users across Europe. The company also claims that one-fourth of all U.K. smartphone users use Snapchat daily.

Separately, Discovery last year formed a streaming-media venture with BAMTech for Europe, and Eurosport has seen double-digit subscriber growth for its Eurosport Player streaming service. It also pacted with ProSiebenSat.1 to launch an over-the-top streaming service in Germany, and launched Discovery and Eurosport channels with Amazon in the U.K. and Germany.