Qatar-based pay-TV broadcaster beIN has signed a deal to broadcast this year’s Rugby World Cup across nine Asian nations exclusively.
The deal was signed with Rugby World Cup rights-holder World Rugby and will see all 48 matches from the tournament on beIN Asia Pacific’s new beIN Sports Rugby channel. Matches will also be live-streamed on the broadcaster’s OTT platfrom in the region, beIN Sports Connect.
The deal covers nine Asian territories; Cambodia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Laos, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, Timor-Leste and Singapore.
This year marks the first time the Rugby World Cup has been held in Asia and World Rugby chairman Sir Bill Beaumont said that he hoped the beIN deal would help to “reach and convert a new fanbase”.
While the deal ends World Rugby’s search for Asian partner, the rights-holder is still searching for a buyer for the rights in Mena – beIN’s home region – after former rights-holder OSN pulled its sports channels earlier this year.