The Messi effect is real for MLS Season Pass: the total number of subscribers to the service has more than doubled since renowned soccer player Lionel Messi joined the league. That stat is via a tweet from Inter Miami club owner Jorge Mas.
Although Apple doesn’t release hard figures, Tim Cook did call out Messi’s contribution on last week’s earnings call: on the subject of MLS, Cook said, “We are beating our expectation in terms of subscribers, and the fact that Messi went to Inter Miami helped us out there a bit, and so we’re very excited about it.”
As well as announcing the doubling of the subscriber base, Inter Miami owner Jorge Mas also called out the growing fanbase of viewers tuning into the Spanish language streams on MLS Season Pass (all MLS games are broadcast in English and Spanish, with separate broadcasting teams.)
Mas said that more than half the viewers of Messi’s matches are watching in Spanish, implying Messi’s association is growing the reach of the league internationally as well as in the US.
Apple previously announced that MLS Season Pass had broken viewership records three times in the week of Messi’s inaugural matches.
Industry sources have indicated that MLS Season Pass was close to reaching the 1 million subscriber milestone before Messi’s arrival. Factoring that into today’s announcement of subscribers doubling would suggest MLS Season Pass now has more than 2 million paying subscribers.
MLS Season Pass costs $14.99 / month, or $12.99 / month for Apple TV+ subscribers. A whole season pass costs $99, or $79 for Apple TV+ subscribers. The groundbreaking Apple and MLS partnership runs through 2032.
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