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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Amazon, Disney, ViacomCBS and Comcast

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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – March 22, 2021 – Zacks.com announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include: Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN - Free Report) , The Walt Disney Company (DIS - Free Report) , ViacomCBS Inc. (VIAC - Free Report) and Comcast Corporation (CMCSA - Free Report) .

Here are highlights from Friday’s Analyst Blog:

Amazon (AMZN - Free Report) Boosts Sports Content Portfolio with NFL Agreement

Amazon has entered a 10-year agreement with National Football League ("NFL") in a bid to strengthen its sports content on Prime Video.

The company will stream 15 Thursday Night Football games during the regular season and one pre-season game a year in the United States for which it had obtained the broadcasting rights earlier.

Notably, this marks the NFL's first exclusive national broadcast package and Amazon's Prime Video is the first streaming service to secure it.

Further, the number of regular season games, including Thursday Night Football,in this package will increase to 15 from 11. These games will begin streaming on Prime Video in 2023.

Additionally, Prime subscribers will be able to avail of new pre-game, half-time, and post-game shows.

We believe that the latest move is likely to strengthen the viewership of Prime Video on the heels of the strong popularity of NFL games. This, in turn, is expected to drive growth in its subscriber base.

Growing Relationship With NFL

The new agreement marks the extension of Amazon's existing relationship with the NFL.

Prior to the latest deal, the e-commerce giant with NFL expanded the 11-game Thursday Night Football package last year to add one exclusive regular-season game per year.

Apart from this, NFL has leveraged Amazon Web Services' ("AWS") cloud-computing solutions for its Next Gen Stats platform.

Further, NFL announced new sports statistics for the 2020 Season namely Expected Rush Yards, Route Classification, Expected Points, Win Probability, Expected Yards After Catch (xYAC) and Field Goal Probability, which were generated from the Next Gen Stats platform and powered by AWS compute technology and AWS Machine Learning services.

Notably, the advanced statistics offer deep insights about the game to fans and viewers.

Per the latest deal, Amazon will also provide fans with access to interactive features like X-Ray and Next Gen Stats.

Expanding Sports Content

Amazon is leaving no stone unturned to expand its live sports portfolio worldwide.

This is likely to strengthen its competitive position in the global streaming space against Disney.

We note that Disney's ESPN has also signed a long-term deal with the NFL. Further, the company's sports-focused streaming service ESPN+ has gained solid traction, primarily owing to content strength. The service streams MLB, NHL and MLS games, Grand Slam tennis, boxing, PGA Tour golf, college sports, international rugby, and cricket, among others.

Further, ViacomCBS' latest multiplatform rights agreement with NFL, which extends CBS's relationship with the league for the next 11 years through the 2033 season, remains noteworthy. Per the deal, the company's Paramount+ streaming service and CBS Sports will continue to air CBS's televised American Football Conference Sunday games.

Meanwhile, Peacock owned by NBCUniversal, a subsidiary of Comcast, will stream the games under the Sunday Night Football package.

Nevertheless, Amazon's strengthening sports content offering remains a major positive. Along with the NFL, the company streams the English Premier League after winning the rights to 20 matches a season.

Additionally, Amazon has launched MLB.TV on Prime Video Channels for Prime members in the United States.

All these endeavors position the company well against the above-mentioned companies.

Currently, Amazon carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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