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Inside this issue: TENNIS: Amazon seeks UK tennis dominance with WTA rights play FOOTBALL: IMG hopes of emerging unscathed from Serie A antitrust probe hang in the balance

The French government strongly encouraged public-service broadcaster France Télévisions to reach an Olympics sublicensing deal with US media group Discovery for the 2022 to 2024 cycle to ensure the widest access to the Paris 2024 games, SportBusiness Media understands.

The International Olympic Committee has seen its Olympic Games rights fee fall in the Indian subcontinent, driven by the long consolidation in the country’s pay-television market.

The Dentsu agency got off to a good start in its 2020 and 2022 Olympics rights sales in Southeast Asia, striking a deal in Singapore that delivered a fee increase and avoided a repeat of the fraught negotiations for Rio 2016.

A consortium of major rights-holders is about to launch legal action in the Saudi courts against the beoutQ pirate broadcast operation, which the rights-holders believe is backed by the Saudi government., SportBusiness Media understands.

South Korean pay-television broadcaster JTBC may be close to a deal with the International Olympic Committee about broadcast rights, potentially including a momentous 2032 Olympics jointly hosted by North…

Chinese conglomerates Alibaba and Suning are planning a joint venture that would create the market’s most powerful sports business, according to industry news website Lanxiong Sports.

Danish public-service broadcaster DR has acquired rights to a host of properties this summer, including the Fifa Women’s World Cup, the European Games multi-sport event and the Uefa U-21 European Championship.

Italian DTT sports broadcaster Sportitalia has expanded its OTT partnership with sports and betting-related services company Sportradar in a deal that will see the broadcaster launch four new HD channels…

Features

BeIN Media Group’s public statement on February 8 that it had dropped Formula One because of the rights-holder’s inaction over the threat posed by the Saudi beoutQ pirate service has caused widespread concern among rights-holders. But it may not be enough to push them into legal action against beoutQ.

OSN’s decision to close most of its sports channels will leave a vacuum in the Middle East and North Africa for rights-holders that is unlikely to be filled for some time, experts have told SportBusiness M…
USA

In honour of Super Bowl LIII, SportBusiness Consulting has updated its USA market focus – part of the 2018 SportBusiness Consulting Global Media Report – and made it freely available.

Discovery Communications secured three late sublicensing rights deals ahead of last month’s winter Olympic Games, taking it closer to its sublicensing revenue target.

Perform-owned OTT platform DAZN has acquired exclusive Commonwealth Games rights in Canada as it bids to widen its subscriber base by adding more locally-relevant content.

The 2018 Olympic Games was shown live in Singapore after a late deal with pay-television broadcaster Eleven Sports, which showed some coverage free-to-air.

Discovery Communications has so far recouped more than 70 per cent of its internal target from sublicensing Olympic Games media rights across Europe, according to TV Sports Markets research.

Public-service broadcaster UA:PBC has acquired rights in Ukraine to the 2018 and 2020 Olympic Games at a considerable uplift on the cost of the 2014 and 2016 Games.

The International Olympic Committee’s deal with telco América Móvil for pay-television and digital rights this month heralds an abrupt change in strategy across Latin America.

Italian public-service broadcaster Rai is understood to be close to a sublicensing deal with Discovery Communications to acquire rights to the 2018 and 2020 Olympic Games.

TVR is in the process of completing its deal for rights to the 2018 and 2020 Olympic Games in Romania.

Last month’s Olympic Games sublicensing deal in Germany with ARD and ZDF has plugged a large gap in Discovery Communications’ revenue projections.

ARD and ZDF are close to a sublicensing deal with Discovery Communications for Olympic Games rights in Germany about nine months after negotiations between the parties broke down.    

The International Olympic Committee will earn about 40 per cent more from sub-Saharan Africa compared to the previous two-Games cycle, taking advantage of Kwesé Sports’ strong desire for Olympic association, TV Sports Markets understands.

Polish public-service broadcaster TVP has paid an increase of over 40 per cent to acquire rights to the 2018 and 2020 Olympic Games from media group Discovery Communications.