LIV Golf seems to have eradicated any doubt over the success of its first week on the CW Network with a stellar report on its viewing figures.
The Saudi-financed league revealed that the opening weekend of the 2023 LIV Golf League in Mayakoba generated an audience of 3.2 million. (That’s about the population of Wales, if you’re into those kind of comparisons.)
This figure was across all linear and digital platforms with data taken in association with iSpot along with the CW and LIV Golf digital data.
LIV Golf’s Saturday broadcast saw 1.6 million people take a seat to watch the action on linear television, CW affiliates, and Nexstar stations. More yhan 1.3 million total linear viewers were picked up on Sunday too.
This is in contrast to the first figures that were originally reported, which suggested that shows like The World’s Funniest Animals on the same channel achieved a higher audience.
Josh Carpenter of the Sports Business Journal also reported that LIV Golf’s second-round coverage attracted 286,000 viewers and an increase to 291,00 in the final round.
The breakaway circuit’s weekend coverage averaged a linear viewership of 537,000 which reportedly beat the average numbers amassed by the National Hockey League on ESPN and TNT and the 2023 Australian Open Men’s final in tennis on ESPN too.
“Our first weekend of live coverage for the 2023 LIV Golf season exceeded expectations,” Will Staeger, LIV Golf’s chief media officer, said.
“LIV has diversified its consumption model, tailoring our distribution to the way viewers consume their content – and these numbers reflect the new ways that sports are watched.
“This is a long-term game of growing our viewership, but we are delighted with our start in the US and extremely encouraged by our global engagement.
“Our preliminary rollout with 12 international broadcast partners and counting signifies a far-reaching demand for LIV Golf, which will be delivered in over 160 territories to more than 380 million homes worldwide.”
LIV Golf also claim the opening tournament at El Camaleon, won by Charles Howell III, caused the CW’s local market ratings to increase by double digits in the top 10 American markets compared to year-to-date weekend averages.
The CW’s weekend primetime national ratings increased by 24% compared with the station’s weekend season-to-date average, while new downloads of the CW app jumped by nearly one million last month. The LIV Golf Plus app was reported to be the weekend’s most-downloaded free sports app across major platforms too.
LIV announced its first mainstream broadcast deal with The CW in January after rumours linked the league to Fox Sports and streaming services such as Apple TV.
48 players teed it up in Mexico at the end of last month with former PGA Tour player Howell taking home a staggering $4.75 million in prize money.
The next event will land at The Gallery in Tucson, Arizona, later this month, a venue that the PGA Tour used twice to host the WGC-Accenture Match Play.
Did you watch the first LIV Golf event of 2023? If so, what did you think? Tweet us!
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