International sports broadcaster Eleven Sports has acquired rights to live stream Serie A games in Italy, while the top division of domestic football is set to enter into private negotiations with bidders for its international rights.
Terms of Eleven’s deal were not disclosed, but it will live stream three Serie A games per week on mobile, tablet and other online platforms as part of a pay offer.
The partnership begins on October 1 with Napoli-Cagliari, Benevento-Inter Milan and AC Milan-Roma. The action will be supplemented by pre and post-match analysis.
Eleven said the live games will typically include the 6pm Saturday match and the games at 12:30pm and 3pm on a Sunday. Individual games will be available for €1.99 ($2.37), or all three matches for €3.99.
Italy became Eleven Sports’ seventh market when the company acquired national OTT platform Sportube in May. The acquisition of Serie A matches in Italy builds on Sportube’s production and delivery of all Serie C games through a dedicated online platform.
“Our model of acquiring smaller rights with economically viable production costs and widespread appeal amongst domestic fans in Italy has proved very successful and we are thrilled to take our coverage of football to the next level by delivering top Serie A action for the fans,” Danny Menken, group managing director of Eleven Sports, said.
“We are looking forward to working in partnership with Serie A to help them reach and grow their fan-base across Italy by providing access to the biggest and best teams and players at an affordable price.”
Meanwhile, Lega Serie A, the governing body of the league, has said it will enter into private talks with interested parties in the bidding process for its next set of international rights.
Earlier this month, it was revealed that a total of 95 offers from 30 companies have been submitted in the international rights-sales process for Serie A, as well as the Coppa Italia knockout tournament and the Supercoppa Italiana clash between the Serie A and Coppa Italia winners.
The bids were submitted by the September 15 deadline and following a meeting on Friday, Lega Serie A revealed that a delegation will travel to London, England this week to hold further talks.
Lega Serie A is being advised by the Infront Sports & Media agency and commissioner Carlo Tavecchio said: “With the advisor, we have decided that general director Marco Brunelli and the deputy commissioner Paolo Nicoletti will soon go to London to open negotiations on the current offers, even though it takes courage to think of reaching the levels of Spain and England, the nations that make the most from foreign rights.”
The rights have been split into six main packages for the three seasons from 2018-19 to 2020-21.
These are: Serie A, Coppa Italia, betting, in-flight/in-ship, ‘Pick’ and Italian Communities. The Pick package provides an opportunity to assign preferred Serie A matches to specific kick-off times and is applicable to Serie A only. The final package is a dedicated Italian-language package specifically intended to serve Italian communities outside Italy.
Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport said four international agencies, including IMG and current partner MP & Silva, are in contention for an all-encompassing global rights package, adding that the Lega is seeking to surpass €300m per season for its international rights.