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Verizon to Stream NFL Games, Boost Digital Media Business

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Per sources, Verizon Communications Inc (VZ - Free Report) will be streaming national Football League (NFL) playoff games on Yahoo Sports, under Oath brand, effective this weekend.

This is a direct follow-up of Verizon’s recent five-year digital streaming deal with NFL. The telecom service provider paid approximately $2.25 billion to stream NFL’s content on its digital and mobile media platforms.

Per reports, Falcons-Eagles and Titans-Patriots games are scheduled for broadcast on Saturday. On Sunday, games of Jaguars-Steelers and Saints-Vikings will be aired. Yahoo Sports will also livestream the conference championships on Jan 21 and the Pro Bowl on Jan 28.

The streaming is not restricted to Verizon customers only. Anyone can stream football games for free on Yahoo Sports app irrespective of mobile network. Viewers are required to download the app on iOS or Google Play and enable location services on their phone. Beginning next season, viewers can access stream in-market and national NFL games, including preseason, regular season, playoff games and the Super Bowl on the Yahoo Sports app.

Verizon Optimistic About Digital Media Suite

Verizon has been striving to strengthen the foundation of its digital media suite.

Oath, a digital content and online advertising suite, is Verizon’s newly-formed company under Media and Telematics organization. It has a diverse portfolio of more than 50 media and technology sites like Yahoo News, HuffPost, Engadget, TechCrunch, MAKERS, Tumblr, BUILD Studios, Yahoo Sports, Yahoo Finance, Yahoo Mail and others. Verizon acquired AOL Inc in June 2015 and the core businesses of the Internet-company, Yahoo! Inc. in June 2017. In October 2017, Verizon announced the offering of Go90 content in some of its Oath brands. Go90 is Verizon’s video streaming service.

In January 2018, Verizon signed an extended carriage deal with A+E Networks, to broadcast the latter’s programming in its digital media suite. Other than A+E cable networks, games like National Women’s Soccer League will also be streamed on Yahoo Sports and Go90 platforms.

With A+E Networks and NFL streaming under Oath, Verizon projects more than $20-billion revenues by 2020. Such important deals are likely to ramp up Verizon’s advertising revenues. The company is primarily targeting young viewers and consumers who do not subscribe to traditional pay-TV packages.

With Oath, the telco has managed to reach more than 200 million mobile and digital viewership in the United States. On the back of Oath and other prospects, Verizon intends to compete against the dominant players in the online and digital video advertising market, which includes Facebook Inc. (FB - Free Report) , Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL - Free Report) and Etsy Inc. (ETSY - Free Report)

Zacks Rank & Price Performance

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

Verizon portrays an impressive price performance. In the past six months, shares of Verizon have rallied 20.4% compared with the industry’s gain of 6.0%.

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