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DAZN defers rights payments while sports are postponed

Company's board is "officially placing it in survive mode"

Sports streaming service DAZN is deferring payment of its rights fees while sports are postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The streamer has told rights holders it will not pay for any content that has yet to be delivered and is deferring payment until there is clarity as to when the respective competitions will resume.

However, it’s believed the company is still buying archive and on-demand content in order to sustain its subscribers’ appetites for sport during the global shutdown.

DAZN is also thought to have told rights holders that it will honour contractual obligations for payments related to events which took place before the pandemic.

According to Reuters, CEO Simon Denyer sent a letter to employees which said the company’s board is “officially placing DAZN in survive mode.”

The plan includes freezing hiring, suspending salary reviews and temporarily laying off an unspecified number of employees.

“There is no hiding that it is the biggest disaster to hit the sports world in 75 years and the biggest challenge our business has ever faced,” Denyer said. “With revenues dropping and investment not available, we can only survive by making some hard decisions.”