Sport TV ceases distribution on Nowo
November 13, 2018
From Branislav Pekic in Rome
Sport TV has halted the distribution of its six premium sports TV channels on Portuguese cable TV operator Nowo.
In a statement, Nowo said the decision was due its refusal to accept the new conditions imposed by Sport TV, including a 15 per cent price hike, which it considers “unfair, inadequate and out of alignment with the reality of the market”. It also claims that the new conditions were presented the day before the last day of the contract.
For its part, Sport TV pointed out the distribution contract ended in July and, although negotiations for the renewal started six months earlier, it was not possible to reach an agreement. It added that Nowo has a “high overdue debt which remains to be settled”, but that it, nevertheless, agreed to maintain the service until November.
According to daily Jornal de Negocios, Nowo owes around €4 billion to Sport TV.
Nowo is the owner of the national distribution rights for rival sports service Eleven Sports, which managed to snatch the Portuguese TV rights for the UEFA Champions League, Formula 1 and the Spanish and French football leagues from Sport TV.
Rival operators Altice Portugal, NOS and Vodafone Portugal have submitted various proposals to Nowo for the distribution of the Eleven Sports channels, but so far no agreement has been reached.
Meanwhile, the French Football Federation (FPF) has reached a distribution agreement for its new TV channel with pay-TV operators Altice (Meo), NOS and Vodafone Portugal.
The channel, known as 11, will start broadcasting in 2019 and its main aim will be to promote Portuguese football, both men’s and women’s.