Tele2 to drop Fox Sports Netherlands

Dutch telecommunications company Tele2 has said it will cease carriage of Fox Sports Netherlands next month after failing to agree terms on a new deal with the pay-television broadcaster.

Tele2 will continue to provide Fox Sports, which provides coverage of top-tier domestic football league the Eredivisie, through to September 13.

Tele2 said it refused to agree to terms demanding that Fox Sports receive a per-subscriber fee across its customer base, regardless of whether they take the channels. Tele2 said in a statement: “This is diametrically opposed to the interests of our customers and the premise of Tele2 that customers only pay for the things they really want.”

The telco added: “Tele2 will continue to stand up for freedom of choice and will not force its customers to pay for something they do not need. State Secretary (Sander) Dekker has indicated that he seriously wants to look at the choice of TV viewers and a la carte TV, in light of the developments concerning Fox Sports, and we call on him to also work on the conditions under which content is made available. We also have asked ACM (Netherlands Authority for Consumer & Markets) to investigate the supply of Fox.”

Tele2’s move comes after cable-television provider KPN this month agreed a fresh carriage deal with Fox Sports Netherlands, ending a dispute between the two parties.

KPN was forced back to the negotiating table with Fox Sports after losing out in a court judgment last month. A judge at the Rechtbank Midden-Nederland court in Utrecht ruled Fox was entitled to demand that its Fox Sports 1 channel is included in KPN’s basic television package and that it receives a per-subscriber fee.

Fox Sports holds broadcast rights for the Eredivisie in a 12-season deal running from 2013-14 to 2024-25.