BT Sport to bid for Champions League?
October 11, 2013
BT Sport may bid for the rights to broadcast Champions League matches from 2015.
The bidding process for rights from 2015 to 2018 in the UK is imminent.
Speaking at the Leaders in Football 2013 event, BT chief executive, Gavin Patterson, said: “We are happy with the content we have got but we also recognise there is much more we could do. This is a long-term strategy for us and you can expect us to do a lot more in the future if the right opportunity to create value presents itself.”
“We are exactly where we hoped to be at this time in terms of audiences but in terms of what we set out to achieve, our goal was not to be number one, it was to be number two. If I look at the amount of live programmes we have got on the channels, it is pretty good and compares very well with Sky.”
“We look at all rights, there is nothing special in that respect around the Champions League. There are other rights available at the moment as well as over the next couple of years and we will look at them and assess whether we feel as if they can improve the overall composition, which is what you would expect.”
Sky paid about £240 million (€282m) to share live coverage of the showpiece European matches each week, with ITV’s £160 million giving the free-to-air-broadcaster first pick of Tuesday night fixtures.
Patterson added: “We believe we can coexist with Sky. Our success does not require their failure, to think otherwise markedly underestimates the scale of the opportunity in this market. Our long-term aim is to make ourselves an immovable part of the broadcasting landscape and we are quietly confident we can succeed where others have not. We have got the rights to things people generally want to watch, we have got creative teams which are producing compelling and imaginative programmes, a terrific offer, free to BT customers and accessible to everyone else if they want it.