KirchMedia Creditors Agree German Soccer Rights Deal

09 July 2002

DFL, the German football league, has agreed a two-year broadcast rights deal with creditor banks of the insolvent KirchMedia, one-time flagship unit of fallen German media empire Kirch Gruppe.

The deal secures funds for Germany’s soccer clubs, whose financial wellbeing had been threatened by the Kirch collapse, and gives the media group’s ailing Premiere World pay-TV platform a boost.

However, although Premiere will broadcast the matches, the rights will in fact be held by a new company owned by the creditor banks. DFL says it has gained guarantees for the contracts, but declined to reveal from whom.

The new contract cost between €590 million ($581m; £379m) and €610m, giving Kirch free-TV, pay-TV and internet rights for two seasons, with the option of two more thereafter. This price is far less than the €800m Kirch would have paid under the deal it had with DFL before insolvency.

It is believed that a recent €100m of extra funding the banks provided for Premiere was conditional on the renewal of the football broadcasting deal.

Data sourced from: Frankfurter Allgemaine Zeitung; additional content by WARC staff