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EXCLUSIVE: Mola TV acquires Bundesliga rights in Indonesia in five-year deal

Indonesian OTT and pay-television platform Mola TV has acquired media rights for German Bundesliga football in a five-year deal from 2020-21 to 2024-25, SportBusiness can reveal.

Mola’s rights cover 306 live Bundesliga and 2. Bundesliga matches per season, live streaming rights for the German Supercup season-opening match, and rights for promotion and relegation play-off matches.

The deal also includes shoulder programming such as highlights and magazine shows, and video-on-demand content. It spans a range of platforms, including free-to-air television, cable, pay-television, IPTV and OTT streaming.

The deal was negotiated by Bundesliga International, the league’s international commercial rights arm.

Mola takes over from pan-regional pay-television broadcaster Fox Sports as the Bundesliga’s broadcaster in Indonesia. Fox held the rights in Indonesia as part of an 80-territory deal covering territories in Europe, the Americas and much of Asia, running 2015-16 to 2019-20.

Mola has said the deal will be one of its last major international sports media-rights acquisitions. The platform told SportBusiness Media recently it is switching focus away from sports content, which has proved too expensive. Its sports output going forward will focus on domestic properties or those featuring Indonesian teams and athletes. It will also increase focus on other content genres, with a particular emphasis on female and child audiences.

Bundesliga International will work with Mola and the Indonesian company’s partners to promote the German league within the market, including visits by Bundesliga clubs, Bundesliga ‘Legend’ appearances, and trophy tours.

The two parties will also work together on youth football development projects. Mola has a major existing youth football development project – Garuda Select, an initiative in which it has taken a group of national team youth players to Europe to train and play matches. Mola has created television programming around Garuda Select that it carries on its OTT and pay-television platform.

The Bundesliga in June announced similar marketing and youth football development projects as part of a media-rights deal in Vietnam for the 2020-21 to 2024-25 period. Bundesliga International chief executive Robert Klein and head of Asia-Pacific Kevin Sim told SportBusiness Media that such initiatives were aimed at developing the Bundesliga’s brand and standing within Asian markets and would be a hallmark of its partnerships with broadcasters in this sales cycle.

The league is currently completing a round of Asian media-rights sales for the period from 2020-21 onwards. So far it has also agreed deals in Japan and Vietnam. The 2020-21 season begins in just over six weeks’ time, on September 18.

Welcoming the Mola deal, Klein said: “We are delighted to have Mola TV as our partner in Indonesia and look forward to working together to make the Bundesliga the league of choice amongst Indonesian football fans. As well as promoting our brand of fast, high-scoring, world-class football, we are also very excited to work with Mola TV and it’s Garuda Select project to support the development of local Indonesian football talent.

“Our goal is to work closely with our partners on the ground, delivering unrivalled experiences to the Indonesian fans by bringing Bundesliga Legends, Bundesliga Experiences and Bundesliga football to the region.”

Mirwan Suwarso, Mola’s official representative, said: “We are excited to work with the Bundesliga to bring their unique brand of football to our shores. The league is the undisputed leader in developing world class young talents from all over the world, and if we aim to learn about developing talents, the Bundesliga is the league to learn from.”