EHF Euro 2020 rights in France secured by beIN

Broadcast rights in France to handball’s men’s and women’s European Championships have been retained by pay-TV broadcaster beIN Sports.

Florent Houzot, director of programming at beIN Sports France, announced the news on Twitter, saying that the broadcaster has tied up the exclusive rights to the EHF Euro 2020 tournaments. He added that beIN would be the only place to watch all matches of France’s men’s and women’s national teams.

The Qatar-based international broadcaster is a dominant force in handball and already holds rights in France to the Starligue, the men’s top-tier competition in France, the EHF Champions League and the IHF World Championship.

The acquisition of rights by beIN coincides with the news that ORF, the Austrian public-service broadcaster, has tied up rights to the 2020, 2022 and 2024 editions of the European Championships.

The men’s EHF Euro 2020 will take place in Austria, Norway and Sweden from January 9 to 26. France have been drawn in Group E and will face Bosnia-Herzegovina, Norway and Portugal. The women’s tournament will be co-hosted by Denmark and Norway from December 3 to 20, 2020.

Details of any plans to sub-licence the free-to-air rights have not yet been revealed by beIN. Ahead of the men’s 2018 EHF Euro, beIN sold on free-to-air rights to three games (a main-round game, semi-final and final) to M6, the commercial network.

Should France reach the final of the men’s or women’s tournament, then the match must also be shown on free-to-air television due to France’s listed events legislation. The Infront agency is selling the broadcast rights to both tournaments.

The European Handball Federation’s 10-year media and marketing rights agreement with Infront and media company DAZN Group will soon kick in, but it excludes the 2020 EHF Euros given they were part of Infront’s previous agreement. The Infront-DAZN contract, which is worth in excess of €500m ($553.5m) in rights fees and services, covers club and national team competitions and runs from 2020 to 2030.