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SBD Global/October 11, 2012/Media
Rising Cost Of Premier League TV Rights Forces Broadcasters To Make 'Tough Choices'
Published October 12, 2012
HOPING FOR A RUGBY BOOST: In London, Roger Blitz reported that BT Vision last month "added further firepower to its sports strategy" by paying £152M ($244M) to take over the Premiership rugby rights held by Sky and ESPN. Francis said, “We’ve had to make some tough choices, and one of these was around Premiership Rugby ... [They] took a decision to go with BT. It wasn’t particularly working for us and we were the junior partners ... We changed tack.” Asked if BSkyB had begun to focus on the next set of Premier League rights beginning in '16, Francis said, “The company has a long-term plan, and every director feeds into that. The sports rights market is like any market – it ebbs and flows. It’s particularly competitive now, it wasn’t particularly competitive two years ago” (FINANCIAL TIMES, 10/10).