Yousef al-Obaidly, chief executive officer of beIN Media Group, has appeared in SportsPro’s annual list of ten influential figures whose work will be setting the agenda for sport in the coming year.
SortsPro’s annual list also included the biggest brands in the world such as The Walt Disney Company, BBC, Juventus, IOC and Nike, according to a statement issued yesterday by beIN Media Group.
Al-Obaidly said: “I am honoured to be recognised amongst such globally esteemed executives across world sport. I am particularly proud that beIN – as a Qatari group – is represented in this list, at a time when our country is leading on the world stage.”
This is what SportsPro had to say on beIN Media Group and Yousef al-Obaidly: “If anyone was still unsure about the growing threat piracy poses to the sports industry, beIN Media Group chief executive Yousef al-Obaidly was sure to eliminate any lingering confusion at the backend of 2019.
“It was then, in no uncertain terms, that he bluntly warned a room of executives in London that the “glorious media rights bubble is about to burst”, that the very revenue stream upon which many sports rely is set to be drained because of the industry’s collective inaction over intellectual property theft.
“Al-Obaidly’s beIN has, of course, been the biggest target for beoutQ, the piracy operation that has been helping itself to the world’s most watched sports content for well over two years.
It is undoubtedly an intricate, politically fuelled and unprecedented state of affairs, but one that has led the Qatar-based broadcaster to reassess whether the $15bn it currently spends on exclusive sports rights is sustainable.
“beIN’s deal with Formula One in the Middle East and North Africa has already fallen victim to the beoutQ saga.
“Having said that, beIN’s recent decision to splash out on exclusive UEFA Champions League rights in France would suggest that the broadcaster will continue to play a role in some of the biggest auctions going forward.
“In any case, his campaign against beoutQ has seen al-Obaidly turn what was once a background conversation into a priority for the industry. Whether he delivers on his threat to scale back beIN’s rights spend remains to be seen, but one certainty is that it will be fascinating finding out”.
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