BT and Sky pay £4.5bn for Premier League rights deals

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Updating stakeholders, Premier League governance details that it has sold two live broadcast packages to Sky Sports and BT Sport for a total sum of £4.46 billion.

BT Sport bought the rights for GBP 295 million per season, and said it was in talks with the Premier League regarding the remaining rights.

The remaining two packages featuring simultaneous matches are expected to go to internet streaming providers such as Amazon or Google, with the Premier League having revealed that it has received interest from multiple bidders for the packages.

Sky have paid £3.579billion for their rights, with BT forking out £885million.

What is not known is whether the Australian rights which are now held by Optus, will return to Foxtel.

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Two further packages of matches are yet to be sold.

That has not proved to be the case, though, and BT said it "will continue to engage with the Premier League regarding the remaining rights". At present, they are shared but the Premier League's leading lights believe they deserve a bigger cut and that argument will inevitably arise again in the near future. The matches that remain up for grabs are for midweek and bank holiday fixtures.

But the auction of 2019-2022 rights left two of the seven packages still up for sale as Sky emerged the big victor and rival broadcaster BT saw its position weakened.

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They are yet to be sold, with Amazon reportedly interested in snaffling at least one of those packages: ten simultaneous games seems ideally suited to their platform.

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In 2015, the Premier League then took a total of £5.1bn for the next three years. The absence of a strong showing from the digital players and a content-sharing agreement between Sky and BT signed in December may have contributed to the restrained bidding. But reports suggest both Sky and BT Sport have become increasingly financially stretched to justify pushing the price higher.

"Securing more games at a lower cost is a major coup, and with BT seemingly content to play second fiddle on the Premier League, that rivalry now looks to have thawed".

United Kingdom broadcast rival, BTSport has secured 32 Saturday 12:30 "lunchtime" fixtures.

"Sky and BT have, six years later than they might have done, got the cross-supply deal in place and finally got the inflation genie back in the bottle", said Mike Darcey, a former chief operating officer at Sky, where he worked on five Premier League bids.

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