Netflix Reportedly Enters Bidding for F1 Rights

NEXT TV

By Daniel Frankel

As at least somewhat suspected, Netflix has entered into the bidding for broadcast rights to Formula 1-series auto racing, looking to unseat incumbent ESPN, TV rights for which end next season.

According to *Business Insider*, Netflix is bidding against the Disney-owned incumbent, as well as Comcast/NBCUniversal and Amazon.

Netflix has seen its sports docu series *Formula 1: Drive to Survive* punch the gas on audience for both the streaming platform and the racing series, the latter of which has enjoyed record-breaking attendance at events of late.

And acquiring the live sports rights would certainly vault Netflix into a place within the video business it's never been before.

But a successful bid won't be cheap. ESPN, which is currently paying $5 million a season, just put up a bid worth $70 million a campaign. However, F1's owner, Liberty Global, is said to be demanding around $100 million annually.

Speculation that Netflix would get into the, er, F1 race quickened in January, when the streaming company paid $225 million for an F1-themed feature film project with Brad Pitt set as the lead, and *Top Gun: Maverick*'s Joe Kosinski set to direct