Globo treating rights fee decisions on case-by-case basis

Brazilian commercial broadcaster Globo has sought to alleviate panic in the domestic football industry amid its decision to suspend payments for certain rights deals, stating its move will not affect clubs competing in the top two national leagues and the Copa do Brasil.

The broadcaster told the UOL portal in Brazil that “each case is being treated according to its specificities”.

It was revealed last week that Globo has suspended payment of the final rights instalment for certain state championships. This included payments to Federação Paulista de Futebol, governing body of football in the state of São Paulo, due to the suspension of the Campeonato Paulista amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

Explaining its strategy, Globo said: “Globo’s decision to re-evaluate the payment of future instalments – in some cases the last instalment – of competitions that were interrupted or postponed, and which still have no date or format for restarting, is part of a process…

“…Globo has so far maintained the payment of clubs participating in the Campeonato Brasileiro Série A, Série B and Copa do Brasil. In the case of the state [championships], Globo has paid for some contracts 100 per cent and in other 75 per cent of the amounts referring to these championships, even with the effective delivery of 55 per cent to 65 per cent of the games.

“Some payments have already been made with the games suspended and we need to seek a balanced solution among all that now depends on a complete review of the annual calendar of Brazilian football.”

Globo holds a six-year contract with the FPF, running from 2016 to 2021, which encompasses free-to-air, pay-television and internet rights to the annual tournament. Globo was due to pay its latest instalment for the contract on April 5.

Globo has suggested that Covid-19 has presented an opportunity for all stakeholders in Brazilian football to assess the business model of the game.

It said: “The crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, which is causing delays and cancellations in sports calendars, means that all the parts that make up the football production chain need to analyse their business models and renegotiate their commitments – clubs, federations, media companies, advertisers and sponsors, among other partners. This is not an exclusive reality of Brazil, and it also occurs in other competitions and sports organisations around the world.”

The broadcaster said it is in daily talks “to find the best ways” to overcome the crisis. It added: “Until then, we are committed to finding creative solutions that have ensured other types of support for Brazilian football, with the exposure of clubs on all our platforms, programming grids and coverage.

“As sports media partners, we are totally interested in finding a path that guarantees a strong, balanced and competitive [future].”