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Report: DAZN outbids Sky in race for Serie A rights with €850m offer

Italian soccer league seeking 18% uptick on its current contracts for 2021 to 2024 cycle.

8 February 2021 Ed Dixon

Getty Images

  • DAZN offers €100m more per season than Sky’s €750m bid, according to Reuters
  • Serie A could combine bids to raise value
  • Elsewhere, Sky confirms deal for Italy’s Champions League rights until 2024

DAZN has offered €850 million (US$1.02 billion) per season in the race to secure domestic rights to Italian soccer’s Serie A for the 2021 to 2024 cycle as it looks to oust pay-TV network Sky, according to Reuters.

The news agency reports that the digital sports media company’s offer would see it broadcast all matches from the Italian top flight on its streaming app. Sky, meanwhile, has purportedly offered €750 million (US$902 million) per season to show games on its various platforms.

However, with Serie A seeking an 18 per cent increase on its current domestic TV deal, neither bid matched the league’s minimum target of €1.15 billion ($1.38 billion) per season.

While DAZN’s larger financial offer would appear to put it in the driving seat, the Reuters report added that the size of the bid might not be the only criteria for valuing the offers. Serie A clubs are reportedly set to discuss the bids on 8th February.

Last month, Lega Serie A chief executive Luigi De Siervo confirmed that DAZN and Sky, as well as Mediapro and Discovery, had made bids for the league’s pay-TV rights for the 2021 to 2024 cycle.

Since then, Serie A has begun private talks with the broadcasters to try and increase the offers.

Under the existing three-year contract, which expires at the end of the current campaign, Serie A receives €973 million (US$1.17 billion) per year from DAZN and Sky, the latter of which has the bulk of games.

While DAZN is keen to wrestle the lion’s share of rights from Sky, Reuters reports that Serie A could raise slightly more than €900 million (US$1.08 billion) by combining DAZN's bid and an offer by Sky to screen some matches on its streaming platform.

Though Sky is yet to secure a Serie A package from next season, the network has acquired rights in Italy to the Uefa Champions League for three years until the end of the 2023/2024 campaign.

Under the terms of the contract, Sky will show 121 of the 137 matches per season from European soccer’s elite club competition. The deal also covers all 282 matches per season from the Uefa Europa League and the new Uefa Europa Conference League.

The remaining 16 Champions League games per season were snapped up by Amazon in December for its Prime Video streaming platform.

The value of Sky’s deal with Uefa, European soccer’s governing body, was not disclosed. Reuters reported in October that Amazon bid between €80 million (US$96.2 million) and €90 million (US$108 million) per season to secure its rights package.

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