Germany’s 2. Basketball Bundesliga issues streaming-focused rights tender

The 2. Basketball Bundesliga, the sport’s second tier in Germany, has issued an invitation to tender for broadcast rights in the 2020-21 and 2021-22 seasons.

In issuing the ITT, the league expressed its ambition that the future live streaming of the 16-team Pro A competition expands the sport’s target group and further increases the reach of the league.

Airtango, a German live streaming platform, came on board at the start of the 2017-18 season to stream free coverage of all matches.

A bid deadline of January 26 has been set by the league.

Christian Krings, managing director of the 2. Basketball Bundesliga, said: “Through the decision to broadcast all Pro A matches live on one platform from the 2017-18 season onwards, basketball fans were offered significantly added value.”

He said that the centralised purchase of professional broadcast equipment by the league will ensure a consistently high production quality for all match broadcasts. The league is now looking to take “another big step in terms of professionalism” through the invitation to tender, according to Krings.

At present, the Pro A teams each pay an annual rental sum of €3,000 ($3,350) plus VAT towards the live streaming production equipment.

Airtango relaunched its platform in the summer and began using an OTT platform provided by Sportradar, the betting, data and live streaming company.

The Pro A league comprises a total of 280 regular-season matches per season, plus 32 play-off and finals matches.

In November 2018, US-based streaming platform FloSports announced an agreement with Airtango to stream live and on-demand games in the US and Canadian markets.

Broadcast rights to Germany’s top-tier Basketball Bundesliga are held by telecoms operator Deutsche Telekom in a five-year deal (from 2018-19 to 2022-23). Deutsche Telekom sublicensed a package of free-to-air rights to Sport1 over the same five-year period.