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Mediaset to participate in new Serie A tender

Mediaset president Fedele Confalonieri has confirmed that the media company will participate in the new sales process for domestic rights to Serie A, the top division of Italian football, when it is launched later this year.

Mediaset filed a complaint to Italy’s antitrust authority, the AGCM, over the structure of the recently-aborted sales process, which the broadcaster claimed favoured pay-television rival Sky.

Mediaset refused to participate in the latest tender and the only offers that were submitted did not meet the expectations of Lega Serie A, which operates the division. Bids for the rights covering three seasons, from 2018-19 to 2020-21, were due in by June 10.

“In the autumn, a new auction for Serie A TV rights is planned and we will be participating with the goal of getting the best football TV offer for Italian fans,” Confalonieri said, according to the Calcio e Finanza website. “We did not participate (in the initial tender) because the package composition was unacceptable, as we have highlighted to both the league and the antitrust agency.”

Flavio Cattaneo, the chief executive of Telecom Italia, said that the telecommunications company would consider launching a joint bid with Mediaset for Serie A rights “if there is a reciprocal convenience.”

According to Il Giornale, Cattaneo added that Mediaset is “respectable” and “has a good market position.” However, he also said that Telecom Italia will “only make investments if they are proportional to the return.”