Promoter Eddie Hearn has announced he will no longer stage fights on Sky Sports and has agreed a “seismic” five-year deal with streaming platform DAZN.
Hearn’s Matchroom Sport operation will begin the new deal in July, bringing to an end a six-year agreement with Sky.
It means fight nights will come as part of a DAZN subscription with no plans in the short term for pay-per-view events.
“I felt we couldn’t push to the next level [with Sky] without increasing the number of pay-per-views,” said Hearn.
World heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua – who is promoted by Hearn – is not part of the DAZN deal initially. Joshua has one fight remaining on his Sky Sports contract, after which his team will decide on where his fights will be shown.
Hearn, 41, told BBC Sport: “The key thing is I felt over the past few years, with the inflation of fight purses in boxing, we have been more reliant on the pay-per-view model. This allows us to make those fight nights and cards as part of a DAZN schedule.
“I don’t think pay-per-view will ever be dead but it needs to be for the right occasion. Our plan is to deliver the pay-per-view nights as part of the subscription offering.”
Hearn would not reveal the value of his DAZN contract but said it was “seismic”. His Matchroom organisation will also have control of production and the delivery of live events on fight nights, which was not the case before.
He believes the new deal offers fans “better value for money” and insists fighters will have greater clarity on what they can earn.
“Over the years we have seen fighters taking risks on pay-per-view events, leaving them with the inability to know how much they get until the 90-day viewing report is in,” Hearn added.
“So this gives more security for those fighters to know what they are earning. We can give the fighter the same money without the risk of waiting and hoping on numbers.”
Under the terms of the deal, DAZN will stream at least 16 Matchroom UK fight nights per year.
The streaming platform was founded in 2015 and launched a year later. It has since won rights to a host of sports and leagues, including Germany’s Bundesliga.