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Euroleague Increases Media Rights Income For '16-17 Season By 36%

Euroleague Basketball increased its media-rights income in the '16-17 season by 36% compared to '15-16, and this will rise further in '17-18 "thanks mainly to a blockbuster deal in Greece," according to McCarthy & Jellis of TV SPORTS MARKETS. The competition will earn about €30M ($31.87M) in '16-17, up from about €22M in '15-16. This will rise to about €34M ($36M) in '17-18. Securing "large increases in the Euroleague’s core markets is key to the success" of its €630M ($669M) joint venture with IMG. The deal struck in Greece last month with pay-TV broadcaster Nova will be worth €8.5M ($9M) per season over the three seasons from '17-18 to '19-20. This is an increase of 98% on the value of the Euroleague’s previous deal in the country, with the Asset Ogilvy agency. Pay-TV broadcaster Cosmote TV is understood to have offered between €5M ($5.3M) and €5.5M ($5.8M) per season for the rights. Nova has "paid such a large increase as it was determined to hang on to the rights: it has lost its grip on many properties to an aggressive Cosmote TV in recent years." Greek broadcasters "have struggled in recent years due to the weak economy," but pay-TV broadcasters were hit with an additional tax from July 1, with a further 10% from each pay-TV subscription having to be paid to the government. Cosmote TV has about 470,000 subscribers; Nova has between 450,000 and 460,000. Nova is expected to sub-license a package of free-to-air rights, "but to whom is not yet decided." A sub-licensing deal with a free-to-air broadcaster "will take time" due to the delay over the award of licenses to commercial broadcasters by the Greek government. Sources close to the Euroleague-Nova deal "believe public-service broadcaster ERT is unlikely to acquire these rights" (TV SPORTS MARKETS, 11/22).