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BeIN Sports secures main package of LaLiga rights

Pay-television broadcaster beIN Sports has secured the main package of domestic rights for Spain's LaLiga, dislodging telecommunications company Telefónica as the main rights-holder for domestic club football in the country.

DTS Distribuidora de Televisión Digital, which is operated by Telefónica, acquired a smaller package of rights.

Through Mediaproducción, beIN Sports acquired package six, which included eight LaLiga games per match day, with one of those matches featuring either Real Madrid or Barcelona. The package also included one ‘Clasico’ match between Real Madrid and Barcelona each season plus “pay-per-view” rights for the Copa del Rey knockout tournament, according to beIN Sports.

The deal is worth €1.9bn ($2bn) over three seasons, from 2016-17 to 2018-19, LaLiga said. Local law mandated that only a Spanish company could acquire the rights. 

DTS snapped up package five for €750m over the same three-season period. LaLiga said that the reserve prices for both packages had been exceeded. Through the DTS deal, Telefónica subsidiary Movistar will have the first choice of one match per round of fixtures.

Several other packages remain unsold in the sales process, with a LaLiga Control Body meeting having been convened to consider the other packages, the organisation added.

In July, Telefónica signed an agreement for the domestic pay-television rights to club football in the 2015-16 season. The €600m agreement granted Telefónica the exclusive exploitation rights to the top two divisions along with all pay-television rights for Copa del Rey matches.

The deadline for the various bids was 2pm local time yesterday (Wednesday). LaLiga president Javier Tebas said last month he wants the rights fee to break the €1bn per season barrier.