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#331726 - 23rd Jun 2009 11:29pm ESPN wins Premiership games
Waddi Offline

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Registered: 11th Jul 2004
Posts: 4006
Loc: New Ferry
Quote:
ESPN is believed to have matched the £159m Setanta paid for the right to screen 23 Premier League games each season from 2010 onwards.

The American sports network, which is owned by Disney, paid significantly less than the £130m Setanta bid for next season's two packages of 46 games, tabling a successful offer of about £90m.

However, Setanta had already made downpayments of about £40m and sources close to the league claim it is not out of pocket, despite the slow death of the previous rights holder. A spokesman for ESPN declined to comment on the price paid.


Setanta could now be placed in administration as early as this week, although talks about saving the company are still continuing.

ESPN is believed to be drawing up plans to launch a new channel on Sky's satellite platform to show its Premier League games from next season.

An announcement is expected later this week, but a wholesale deal has been struck between the Disney-owned sports network and BSkyB and industry sources say a standalone channel will be available on Sky's Electronic Programming Guide (EPG) before the new football season begins.

ESPN currently has two channels, ESPN Classic, a basic pay service which shows repeats of English sporting events including top-flight football, international rugby and cricket; and ESPN America, a premium subscription channel which screens US sport including American football, ice hockey, baseball and basketball.

The company will not seek to emulate Setanta's business model, which centred on selling subscriptions direct to customers, choosing instead to use Sky's expertise and infrastructure to market the channel showing live Premier League action to the satellite company's existing base of almost 10 million subscribers, about 6 million of whom pay for its sports package.

ESPN is also expected to strike similar deals with other UK pay-TV operators, including cable company Virgin Media and BT Vision, the phone company's broadband TV service.


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#331728 - 23rd Jun 2009 11:31pm Re: ESPN wins Premiership games [Re: Waddi]
Waddi Offline

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Registered: 11th Jul 2004
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ESPN UK website is already live, just with a welcome page at the mo, but it confirms Live Premiership games, also available in HD from 2009/10 season to 2012/13 season.

http://www.espn.co.uk/
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#331729 - 23rd Jun 2009 11:37pm Re: ESPN wins Premiership games [Re: Waddi]
MattLFC Offline
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Registered: 14th Aug 2004
Posts: 22315
Loc: Moreton/Beirut/Mobile
retty obvious they were going to get it to be honest, the only real competitor I though might have stepped in was possibly Canal+/Vivendi, but they have little interest in the UK market - though I thought it may have been a starting block for them.

Having said that, the game's are reduced to just 23 a season come 2010, so I think ESPN, given their experience, a bunch of exclusive rights deals over in North and South America, and their archive library possibilities, are most certainly the best team for the job, apart from Sky of course.

smile

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#331742 - 24th Jun 2009 8:39am Re: ESPN wins Premiership games [Re: MattLFC]
Beaty59 Offline
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Registered: 5th May 2009
Posts: 235
Loc: Port Sunlight
ESPN website says it will broadcast in HD which Setanta never did. Once you've watched the games in HD on sky it was a pain then watching them in SD on Setanta

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#331779 - 24th Jun 2009 1:04pm Re: ESPN wins Premiership games [Re: Beaty59]
_jase_
Unregistered


Originally Posted By: Beaty59
Once you've watched the games in HD on sky it was a pain then watching them in SD on Setanta


withthat

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#332845 - 30th Jun 2009 12:27am Re: ESPN wins Premiership games [Re: ]
MattLFC Offline
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Registered: 14th Aug 2004
Posts: 22315
Loc: Moreton/Beirut/Mobile
Hmmm, announced today that Sky will be doing all the production, managing the subscriptions, and selling the HD content to its premium HD customers exclusively.

Which isnt all too surprising, given the fact that Sky and Disney have a very good and long-term working relationship.

So essentially, it's the launch of the long-awaited Sky Sports 4 in drag (which was announced on the Satellite scheduling lists throughout 2006 - 2008 iirc).

smile

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#332847 - 30th Jun 2009 12:38am Re: ESPN wins Premiership games [Re: MattLFC]
Waddi Offline

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Registered: 11th Jul 2004
Posts: 4006
Loc: New Ferry
Have sky exploited a monopoly loop-hole?
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#332849 - 30th Jun 2009 12:42am Re: ESPN wins Premiership games [Re: Waddi]
MattLFC Offline
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Registered: 14th Aug 2004
Posts: 22315
Loc: Moreton/Beirut/Mobile
Quite possibly, but tbh, it's mainly because ESPN (well Disney) are very good friends with Sky, but moreso because Disney don't want ESPN to go the same way as Setanta.

Ive said it before, and ill say it again, NOBODY else can sustain high-quality sports channels with expensive contracts, other than Sky Sports. They have been there, done that, and lost billions over the years doing it. They are now poriftable, and know all the pitfalls there is, and know exactly how to pentrate their target market.

ESPN likely would'nt have even bothered, had they not had the backing of Sky, and I can't really see anyone else putting a bid in, had ESPN decided it was not viable, after the mess that Setanta, ITV Digital and NTL all found themselves in during the past 10 years when trying to take part in the football game.

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