It turns out that when you pay exorbitant money for the services of the world’s best boxers, the cost gets passed down to the consumers.
DAZN announced on Thursday that for United States subscribers, the monthly rate will be increased from $9.99 to $19.99, effective on Monday, March 25th. Those who are already subscribed will be allowed to keep that price until March 2020.
Another tweak to the payment structure is the introduction of an annual subscription option. The cost is $99.99 for 12 months, or roughly $8.33 per month for the full commitment. You don’t have to be a math whiz to figure out what is better monthly value, although not everyone is in great financial position or necessarily wants to spend $100 in one shot.
Some additional tidbits of info from MMA Fighting’s Dave Meltzer:
DAZN officials announced the change on Thursday after studying subscriber patterns. They found that their audience in general fit into two categories. One category was those who subscribed and watched regularly, whether it was the boxing, MMA or Major League Baseball coverage. That group maintained its subscription.
The other group treated DAZN more as a pay-per-view entity, subscribing, watching a single event, and then canceling after the event.
The mentality is to discount the price slightly to those who commit for one year. For those who subscribe based on the event, like a pay-per-view, the mentality is that $19.99 is still far less expensive than the price of a Canelo Alvarez or Gennady Golovkin pay-per-view would have been.
The sticker shock of doubling the monthly price probably won’t sit well for many, and it’s abundantly clear that DAZN’s American market is focused (for now) on boxing above all else. Canelo Alvarez was signed to an 11-fight, $365 million contract last year. Gennady Golovkin joined DAZN on a six-fight deal that’s also going to total nine-figures. They tried to land Deontay Wilder on a three-fight, $100 million arrangement that included two Anthony Joshua bouts.
MMA content on DAZN includes Bellator MMA, KSW, ROAD FC, and Combate Americas, but none of them can really be considered a major needle-mover relative to big boxing draws such as Canelo, GGG, or Anthony Joshua. Compare that with ESPN+, which offers up extensive UFC programming and (in May) the Professional Fighters League for $4.99 per month, not including the $60 UFC PPVs that been added to the equation.
And for those who think they can game the system by doing DAZN’s one-month free trials, that route will be shut off soon. It means that even for those who want to watch major fights as one-offs will have to pony up $19.99.