NBCUniversal, the parent company of CNBC, announced Monday it will show more than 7,000 hours of content from the Tokyo Olympics across its networks and streaming platforms.
Historically, the Summer Olympics has been a massive draw for viewers. In 2016, the two-week event attracted an average of 27.5 million viewers across all NBC platforms, and delivered 3.3 billion minutes of streaming video. The 2012 Games in London attracted roughly 31 million viewers, and the 2008 Beijing Olympics averaged 27 million viewers.
This year’s spectacle, which was postponed from 2020 because of the Covid pandemic, runs from July 23 to Aug. 8, with NBC’s broadcast network anchoring prime-time events. The games will include 41 sporting events, including new competitions such as baseball, softball, skateboarding, surfing and karate.
NBC will show popular competitions, including the USA men’s basketball team’s chase for a 16th gold medal, women’s basketball, women’s soccer, swimming and gymnastics featuring USA champion Simone Biles. More than 5,000 hours will stream on NBColympics.com
In addition, cable sports network NBCSN will broadcast more than 440 hours and USA Network more than 380 hours on USA Network. The Olympic Channel will show Team USA competitions, including wrestling and tennis. The Golf Channel will show golf events, and Telemundo Deportes will air competitions in Spanish language.
CNBC will show more than 100 hours of competitions during its prime-time programming hours, including diving, beach volleyball, rowing, water polo and rugby. The network has aired Olympic games since 2000.
In a statement, Molly Solomon, NBC Olympics production president, said coverage around the Tokyo Olympics would be “unprecedented” and will showcase “once-in-a-generation athletes and storylines that will capture the incredible uniqueness of these Games and our times.”
In 2014, NBC and the International Olympic Committee agreed to a $7.75 billion media rights deal to extend their partnership. The current agreement runs through the 2032 Olympics and allows NBC to leverage the 2024 event in France and the 2028 Games in Los Angeles.
There has been opposition about holding the event this year as Covid continues to impact countries. The IOC has inserted intense pandemic protocols for the games, including testing athletes at least every four days. Spectators from outside of Japan will not be allowed to attend competitions.
Disclosure: Comcast-owned NBCUniversal is the parent company of CNBC.