Bidding For Premier League TV Rights In U.S. Extended One More Week

The auction for the US media rights to the English Premier League has moved into an additional round of bidding. The new deadline is now Friday, October 26, according to MultiChannel News.

The publication says that sources close to the negotiations have confirmed that the bidders for the 2013-2016 Premier League seasons on US media have until October 26 to enter their final bids.

Between MultiChannel News and Sports Business Daily, the publications have reported that they believe interest in bidding have been entered by FOX Soccer-ESPN (as a combined bid), beIN SPORT, NBC Sports, IMG and Discovery Networks. According to Sports Business Daily, NBC Sports entered a smaller bid. IMG, meanwhile, is supposedly interested in bidding so they can resell the rights in sublicense deals, while Discovery Networks would be interested in boosting their Velocity network (or potentially their sister network BBC America).

It may come down to FOX Soccer-ESPN versus beIN SPORT. However, beIN SPORT is being very coy and extremely quiet regarding their interest. And questions remain whether beIN SPORT will have enough bandwidth to show live Serie A, EPL and La Liga, where timing often clashes, on its two channels.

Which network would you prefer to win the rights?

43 thoughts on “Bidding For Premier League TV Rights In U.S. Extended One More Week”

      1. At first I wanted Bein just for some new blood. But how many games would they be able to show with all their leagues they already have?

  1. I’d love to see them all win. Fox/ESPN win A & B rights first pick of matches. Let BeIN carry the C matches, NBC the D matches and so on. I’m all for getting as many games as possible aired live as possible. and I’d imagine if you broke up the matches to different channels we’d be very happy, and the PL would generate more cash.

    1. There’s only one package, so whoever wins the rights will win the one-and-only package. The winning bidder can decide to sublicense rights to others later on.

      The Gaffer

    1. It’s quite possible that the first round of bids were so close that they want to extend the bidding process by one more week to narrow it down to the few who are willing to enter revised bids, as a way for the Premier League to generate the highest bid possible.

      The Gaffer

      1. If it works the same as the domestic deal it goes to a second round because either the bids were close or a new bidder bid more money than the existing rights holder. When that happens (like when BT outbid Sky on all packages) they give the existing rights holder one more chance to up their bid… It’s the second round that brings the panic and outrageous sums into play because nobody is 100% sure who they’re bidding against.

  2. It would be suicide long term for the EPL hopes of growth in the states to go with BeIN. The Fox/ESPN bid means Fox can continue to carry loads of games for the dedicated fan (and Fox is available to just about all cable/sat customers) while ESPN can have their choice of games to help grow the overall casual audience, as indeed Fox can with their showing of top tier games on their broadcast channel.

  3. I wouldn’t mind seeing NBC Sports getting it, but there would be a clash of programming some weekends because they just got the rights to Formula 1. I heard that NBC Sports was going to be moving to the 200 channels on DirecTV.

    I just pray that beIN Sports doesn’t get the rights.

  4. In terms of quality of production for games, BeIn are miles ahead of Fox. However, BeIn isn’t as widely available as Fox-ESPN so that alone means we should all hope and pray that Fox-ESPN win the bid.

    I also hope that the EPL doesn’t just go with the highest bidder but also looks at whether the games will be widely available to most viewers in this country. You cannot grow fan base if you don’t expose your product to the most number of people.

    1. As far as my sources go, there’s no stipulation regarding distribution. So, it appears that whoever bids the most will win regardless of distribution.

      The Gaffer

      1. That is just nuts. Exposure, quality of coverage, amount of coverage all seem very important to growing the brand name in the US.

      2. I didn’t think they imposed restrictions like some people have said in the past. Fact is, it’s business so highest bidder wins. Whatever way you look at it, they’ve taken £3 BILLION for the UK market alone so anything else they’re just going to get as much as they can and be done with it.

        No disrespect but they’re not overly concerned with growing the game in the US. They focus more attention on the lucrative Asian market.

  5. If BeIN Sports wins the rights, the EPL will lose a massive amount of coverage and any momentum they gained in the States.

    1. I’m all for the status quo. We have the best Premier League experience we’ve ever had in this country — with every game guaranteed to be available live, some of which are now on national free-to-air TV. While beIN could bring a refreshing slant to the Premier League, my main concern is distribution. The US TV market is so convoluted, it can take years for a new TV network to be available across most cable providers.

      The Gaffer

      1. Me too, Cox New England is not going to add BeIN anytime soon.
        Remember a few years ago, distribution problem in China make EPL lost a lot of fan there.

  6. I just changed cable providers in Kansas City from Time Warner to Surewest. I hit him hard on soccer channels- he told me Bein sports is already about to be added everywhere and it would be a far better deal for consumers than Fox soccer because for whatever reason Fox soccers charges outrageous fees to be carrier (I would pay $15 extra for just Fox Soccer + more than HBO) while Fox soccer was a part of a sports package (but ate up most of the charge there) Bein sports would be about $2-3 and offer more channels- Cable companies are rooting against Fox soccer-He had no explanation why they charge so much

    1. Complete nonsense.

      FOX Soccer charges about $0.25/subscriber/month. Compare that to over $5 for ESPN and another $0.50 for ESPN2.

      The reason why cable companies are rooting for beIN SPORT and against FOX Soccer is because beIN SPORT PAYS cable companies as much as $5 per subscriber in launch fee in advance before charging only around $0.15/subscriber/month.

      NewsCorp is involved with sports TV, including soccer, in order to make money.

      In contrast, beIN SPORT’s “business model” is spending as much of Sheik Al Thani’s money as quickly as possible so that Youssef and Nasser can conduct “private banking” with the prince of Liechtenstein.

  7. I hope the FOX/ESPN bid wins. They have established themselves in the US as the soccer channels. These 2 networks helped build soccer in the USA. I think if Bein wins it will be a step backwards for a couple of years.

    On a side note are the FOX networks going to change and go to FOX1, FOX 2, etc. They lost the Dan Patrick Show simulcast and the SPEED channel no longer has F1 racing.

  8. BeIN sport, widely available? BeIN can’t even broadcast the content they have now, in the US.

    It should be in the realm of good business for a content creator to have potential distributors, in addition to amount of their cash bids, make a case for how well will they promote the “best interests” of the game, in a still emerging market.

    Unfortunately – the PL will only consider the former.

    1. In case you haven’t figured out by now, beIN SPORT (pronounced “BEAN SPORT” in Spanish) is all about spending as much money on international sports rights as possible so that Youssef and Nasser can conduct as much “private banking” as possible with the prince of Liechtenstein.

      If Richard Scudamore is willing to play the “private banking” game with Youssef and Nasser, then beIN SPORT will blow FOX, ESPN, and Comcast/NBC away for the U.S. rights to EPL.

      However, if Mr. Scudamore were to refuse to conduct “private banking” business in Liechtenstein, then beIN SPORT LLC (Youssef) will not bid for the U.S. or Canadian rights to EPL.

      Canada is a much more interesting story right now, as the CRTC has opened a formal investigation to figure out the finances behind the proposed acquisition of a minority stake of TeleLatino Network by beIN SPORT LLC.

      Until the CRTC gets to the bottom of all the alleged “private banking” that Youssef and Nasser conducts with the prince of Liechtenstein, the CRTC will hold up the TeleLatino/EuroWorld Sport/beIN SPORT deal and beIN SPORT Canada will not launch.

      1. The is the guy who was championing beIN as the future of soccer broadcasting and who now bashes the ownership every chance he gets since they turned down his employment request.

  9. I’m enjoying beIN Sport, but they are not ready for the Premier League.

    If Qatar can get the World Cup, I won’t be surprised if beIN gets the Premier League broadcast rights. If this happens, I hope they hire Macca away from ESPN.

      1. Correct. One live package of 380 matches each season for the next 3 seasons. No stipulations on household clearance.

        From the ITT:

        4.4 Live Package – Match Content
        The Premier League is inviting bids for a single Live Package of rights for exploitation within each Broadcast Territory which comprises three hundred and eighty (380) Matches per season. However, potential bidders should note that, due to the requirements of the football calendar and other domestic and international football competitions, there will not be a full (or any) fixture programme of Matches on certain weekends in each season during the Term.
        Matches shall, as a general rule, kick-off on the days and at the times set out in Schedule 5.

  10. I also hope for the status quo, but I understand BeIN is fowarding a second bid, for the good of the game I hope Fox and ESPN are successful, I hate the way BeIN treats the nPower Championship.


    1. By now, you should have figured out that beIN SPORT (pronounced BEAN SPORT) is all about “private banking” for Youssef and Nasser. They have already stashed barrels of the Sheik’s money with the prince of Liechtenstein. They can care less how the viewers actually think of the channels themselves.

      In contrast, FOX is still investing money upgrading FOX Soccer.

      Say what you want about FOX Soccer during its early years being an amateur operation, but FOX Soccer in 2012 is not the same as FOX Soccer in 1998-2006.

  11. I’ve watched BeIN in many countries and they transmit everything direct from the UK – games/shows etc on continous 24 hour channels devoted entirely to English football. If that is the case for the US then BeIN easily gets my vote.

    Also like others I’m forced to pay a premium for FSC.

  12. OTTAWA (CRTC) – The Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Association (CRTC) has opened a formal investigation in the proposed acquisition of a minority stake in TeleLatino Network, Inc. by beIN SPORT LLC.

    The investigation will involve full documentation of financial arrangements between the companies, including all private banking transactions.

    The CRTC will make no further comment regarding this investigation until it is complete.

    1. Do you have a link or anything to this press release? I’ve looked all over the CRTC site (and the rest of the internet) and can’t find anything.

      1. No, he does not.

        You have to understand that 3/4 or so of what Ollie posts are fantasies fabricated like so much mental scaffolding to prop up his self-deluded insistence that he’s an “industry insider.”

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