Peloton to feature WNBA-specific initiatives in 2024
The GIST: After a post-pandemic slump, Peloton spun a multiyear partnership with the NBA and WNBA that will feature WNBA–specific initiatives in 2024. The fitness company’s first-ever live sports deal will allow League Pass subscribers to watch games (along with NBA and WNBA–themed classes!) right from their bikes. Multitasking at its finest.
The context: The agreement comes as the NBA explores its future in media rights, which could be worth $75B. After its exclusive broadcasting deals with Disney and Warner Bros. end in 2025, the league should look for an assist from streamers, who have already expressed interest in replacing regional sports networks.
- The NBA’s future resembles the WNBA’s present, but that’s because traditional networks were hesitant to engage with the women’s league in the past. After expanding its ESPN and CBS partnerships in 2019, WNBA ratings rocketed up 64% YoY, and this year’s regular season saw a 27% increase YoY. She ain’t for the shelf.
The Peloton of it all: The former Wall Street darling has fallen on hard times with their stock price free-falling since 2021, not to mention a recall that spurred a 29K subscriber loss in Q2. Its latest approach has been the partnership route, securing deals with Lululemon and Hilton to re-establish its elite persona.
- A pro basketball partnership makes sense for Peloton, even if it’s giving gym vibes. The sport scores major cool points with Gen Z, with zoomers showing extra love for the women’s game. And W fans tend to be a diverse, tech-savvy, and socially-connected bunch — aka perfect recruits for the leaderboard.
Zooming out: The Peloton deal illustrates not only how live sports collabs can energize lifestyle brands, but also how the NBA can leverage its brand in umbrella partnerships that cover its sister league. Like it or not, the two remain closely intertwined, and the relationship is at its best when the NBA shines a light on the W. Go off then, sis.