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AFC to launch open tender for media rights

The Asian Football Confederation Executive Committee has agreed on a strategy to launch an open tender for its next cycle of rights from 2020.

The tender will cover the AFC’s media and commercial rights for its various club and national team competitions.

The AFC said it expects the tender to produce “one of the largest sales of football rights” in its history.

AFC president Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa said: “The value of these rights will allow the development of the game on the continent to grow at an unprecedented pace. We have placed good governance and integrity at the centre of our vision and mission and we will ensure that the process for the sale of the rights adheres to the key principles. We need to set an example by being extremely transparent and the Executive Committee must be across every detail as we seek to optimise our commercial value.”

In December the AFC voted to put its media and marketing rights beyond 2020 out to tender. In 2015 the Lagardère-owned World Sport Group agency agreed an extension with the AFC through to 2028, but the deal, which was negotiated directly with the agency and was not opened up to the wider market, was not ratified by the AFC Executive Committee.

WSG currently has rights to AFC events in a deal based on a guarantee of $600m (€548m) over eight years, from 2013 to 2020.