The top-tier soccer league in the Netherlands, the Eredivisie, has signed a blockbuster new deal with News Corp's Fox group.
An official statement from the Eredivisie confirmed today that Fox International had taken a majority 51 per cent stake in Eredivisie Media and Marketing, the commercial arm of the league.
The 18 clubs in the league, the Dutch FA (KNVB) and Endemol, the key stakeholders in the Eredivisie, voted unanimously to accept Fox's proposal last week. The clubs will continue to hold a 49 per cent stake between them.
No further details have been released by the Eredivisie, but according to Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf, negotiations took place between the Rupert Murdoch-owned company and the Eredivisie in secret meetings in London last week.
According to De Telegraaf, Fox will pay €1.02 billion over a period of 12 years for the deal. The contract will run from the 2013-2014 season until the end of the 2024-2025 season.
Fox is believed to have implemented a payment stucture whereby some €60 million will be signed over in the first year of the deal, €80 million the next, and €100 million thereafter. The company has also agreed to underwrite the €60 million of debt attached to the Eredivisie own broadcast platform Eredivisie Live.
It is unclear at this point how broadcast rights will be distributed.