BSkyB and ESPN land Scottish Premier League rights in £65m deal

LONDON - BSkyB and ESPN have struck a £65m deal with the Scottish Premier League to air 60 live Clydesdale Bank Premier League matches each season across the UK and Ireland.

The deal will last until the end of season 2011/12 with the SPL having an option to extend for a further two seasons. The agreement, under which Sky and ESPN will both cover 30 live Clydesdale Bank Premier League games each season, was agreed at an AGM today.

The deal is a major boost to ESPN, which is making its fist move into live premium sports broadcasting in the UK next month. In recent weeks it has picked up broadcasting rights to English Premier League games in the UK and the Republic of Ireland. The SPL deal now broadens its appeal in Scotland.

Lex Gold, chairman of the SPL, said: "We are pleased that in just over three weeks we have been able to strike this deal. Sky and ESPN are two of the biggest names in sports broadcasting and they will bring first class production standards and a wide audience to the table. We are looking forward to working with both in the coming years to raise the profile of the SPL for our clubs, fans and partners."

It had been thought that the SPL might not accept the Sky and ESPN bid. Previous SPL UK rights holder Setanta struck a £125m, four-year package with Setanta earlier this year.

Rangers FC said this week that that it was looking to buy the rights - a move which could precede the launch of a new TV channel backed by the clubs - because the terms on offer from Sky and ESPN are "so low".

At the time the club said: "Rangers and Celtic have had discussions with regard to buying out the SPL television rights. Both clubs felt obliged to do this given the offer from Sky and ESPN is so low."

Have your say...

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Media Week Jobs
Search for more media jobs

Latest

Twitter video: what marketers need to know

Twitter video: what marketers need to know

The roll-out of Twitter video is a positive move to further improve user experience, writes Andy Pringle, head of performance media, Performics UK, part of the ZenithOptimedia Group.

Share
'Too vague' Google forced to review data privacy policy

'Too vague' Google forced to review data privacy policy

The office of the Information Commissioner (ICO) has forced Google to review its privacy policy and improve the way it communicates to customers how it uses data.

Share
Tony Vickers service of thanksgiving on 23 February

Tony Vickers service of thanksgiving on 23 February

A service of thanksgiving for Tony Vickers, the former managing director of sales and marketing at BSkyB and sales chief at TV-am, will be held on Monday 23 February.

Share

Get news by email