Fox sells out Super Bowl 2020 inventory for record $5.6m per ad
Fox Sports, the US national sports network, has sold its entire inventory of advertising slots for American football's showpiece Super Bowl this season for a record $5.6 million.
It marks the first time in five years that the all commercials for the major event have sold out before Thanksgiving (this Thursday) as it has gone down to the wire with sales in recent seasons.
Seth Winter, Fox Sports’ executive vice-president for sports sales, revealed the broadcaster sold the last of the 77 available spots on Friday.
According to Winter, the commercial spots traditionally sell out around Christmas or early January.
He told USA’s Variety magazine: “We have sold all of our in-game inventory in the Super Bowl. There are a number of advertisers, frankly, who couldn’t land their spots with us because their creative wasn’t ready or because of some indecisiveness, so we are going to go to pre- and post-game inventory to land their units.”
Despite single 30-second ads costing as much as $5.6 million, Winter said discounts were offered to companies which purchased more than one slot.
Rival network CBS looked for between $5.1 million and $5.3 million for a package of commercial inventory in its Super Bowl broadcast last year.
CBS did not declare a sell-out of its ad slots for last season’s showpiece until 1 February.
Fox is also believed to seeking between $2 million and $3 million for advertising slots in its pre- and post-game coverage.
The network and the NFL agreed to show fewer commercial breaks, with each quarter to feature four instead of the traditional five but the four ad breaks will be longer in length.
According to Winter, the decline in television ratings for regular season games meant that advertisers were more keen to take advantage of the huge media attention around the Super Bowl and a guaranteed large audience.
He added: “There just is a dearth of ratings points out there. Beyond the Super Bowl, there are very few guarantees, except, again, other postseason football.”
This will be Fox’s ninth broadcast of the Super Bowl since its first coverage of the game in 1997.
The game is rotated between the NFL’s rights-holders Fox, CBS and NBC each year as part of their billion dollar national broadcast deals with the league.
Super Bowl LIV will be played on 2 February at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami.