Sky Retains Bulk of Bundesliga Media Rights


LONDON: Sky has clinched a new contract for Bundesliga football through to 2021, with an average rights cost per annum of €876 million ($998 million).

Following the German Professional Football Association’s (DFL) tender process, Sky customers can watch 572 live matches a season from 2017-18 to 2020-21 across all platforms. The new deal means Sky will continue to broadcast 93 percent of all live matches, including full live coverage of Bundesliga matches on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. Also, for the first time, Sky will become the exclusive live broadcaster for all matches of the Bundesliga 2 regular season, with an additional live match on Monday evenings.

Sky agreed to pay 32-percent more in the 2017-18 season (the first year of the new contract) than in the final year of the existing agreement, which concludes at the end of the 2016-17 season. Over the four years of the new agreement, the average rights cost per annum will be €876 million ($998 million), compared to an average of €486 million ($553.8 million) per annum under the existing contract.

Eurosport, meanwhile, will show Bundesliga matches exclusively to fans in Germany for the first time following a new agreement with the DFL. The four-year deal will see Eurosport show the regular Friday night prime-time, selected Sunday afternoon and top Monday night Bundesliga matches exclusively on Eurosport paid platforms in Germany from 2017-18. Eurosport will present 40 live Bundesliga matches per season, as well as the German Supercup and the four relegation matches. Matches shown on Eurosport also will be available exclusively live to fans on the digital Eurosport Player.

Jeremy Darroch, the group chief executive of Sky, said: “We are delighted to win the Bundesliga contract. This means Sky Deutschland is the undisputed home of football through to 2021 in one of Europe’s most passionate sports markets. This is an important step to building our business in Germany and maximizing the significant opportunity for growth. Our continued leadership in sport will underpin the execution of our wider strategy for building out pay TV: providing a broad range of the very best content, market-leading innovation and best in class service from a trusted brand. We are pleased with the progress we are making and we are well placed to bring Sky to even more customers in Germany and create value for our shareholders.”

Peter Hutton, Eurosport’s CEO, said: “When you consider our goal is to secure more must-have and highly relevant sport content, Bundesliga rights within Germany and the Olympic Games across the continent are at the very top of the pyramid.   We look forward to continuing our strong partnership with the DFL and showcasing football to the highest standards for fans in Germany.”

Susanne Aigner-Drews, the senior VP and general manager for Germany, Austria and Switzerland at Discovery Networks Deutschland, said: “We are honored to be awarded the right to show exclusive Bundesliga matches live to fans in Germany for the very first time.  It is a landmark agreement to further the transformation of Eurosport in Germany, which also includes MotoGP, the FA Cup and Grand Slam tennis, we are providing more of the very best premium content to fuel the passion of German sport fans. ”