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NFL’s German broadcast rights snapped up by RTL and DAZN from 2023

New deals provide for more than 170 live games per season, with 30% more coverage available in German.

6 September 2022 Rory Jones

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The National Football League (NFL) has unveiled a pair of long-term media rights agreements with free-to-air (FTA) network RTL and subscription streaming platform DAZN for the German-speaking DACH region.

The new broadcast partnerships will kick in from the start of the 2023 season, providing for a combined 170 live games each season. The new deals will offer almost 30 per cent more live games with German language commentary than under the current pacts with DAZN and the ProSieben commercial network.

RTL and its sister commercial channel Nitro will be the league’s FTA broadcast partners, with the RTL+ streaming service also broadcasting exclusive games every week.

The FTA contract provides for almost 80 live games per season. RTL’s NFL coverage will include the annual draft, as well as preseason, regular season, playoffs, the Pro Bowl and the Super Bowl.

DAZN’s ‘ENDZN’ programming, the streaming service’s bespoke NFL whip-around live show, will continue, as will its carriage agreement for RedZone. As per its current contract, DAZN will carry live broadcasts of all primetime Thursday, Sunday and Monday night fixtures. Starting in 2023, DAZN will also exclusively air one early kickoff game, as well as one matchup from the later time slot.

The new German broadcast deals also include co-exclusive rights for the NFL’s games in Germany. The number of regular season NFL games in Germany double from one to two in 2023, with both Munich and Frankfurt hosting matches.

“From the 2023/2024 season, German NFL fans will be able to watch more live game broadcasts in German, and more weekly programming showcasing the best of the action on and off the field, than ever before,” said Sameer Pabari, the NFL’s managing director of international media.

“Both RTL and DAZN are committed to further developing the sport of football across the German speaking market with innovative content concepts, new approaches to broadcasting, and truly cross-platform distribution plans, ensuring that NFL continues to reach new audiences and grow the number of fans in the region for years to come.”

Hanning Tewes, RTL’s managing director of television and chief content officer, added: “With the acquisition of the NFL rights, we are strengthening our programs sustainably for many years to come – this applies to RTL as well as to Nitro and our fast-growing streaming offering RTL+.

“This investment underscores our ambition as a broadcasting group to remain Germany’s leader in the advertising-relevant target group in the future. Viewers can look forward to highly attractive live sports from the USA.

“In the NFL, we have a highly professional partner who is also focused on growth, and we are very much looking forward to working with the world’s most successful professional league.”

Alice Mascia, head of DAZN in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, said: “American football and enthusiasm for the NFL have been growing rapidly in German-speaking countries for years, to which DAZN’s strong partnership with the NFL has contributed significantly.

“Innovative formats like ‘ENDZN’, which fans can only experience on DAZN, and the most comprehensive live as well as editorial coverage in German, make the NFL one of the most popular leagues among DAZN subscribers. That’s why I’m delighted that we’ll be able to present it to fans for many years to come via DAZN and the linear channels DAZN1 and DAZN2.”

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