LaLiga invites media rights bids from 16 European countries
By Simon Ward
Spanish soccer’s LaLiga has launched an invitation to tender for media rights for the next cycle in 16 European markets.
On offer are audiovisual rights to the top-tier LaLiga Santander and second-tier LaLiga SmartBank for three seasons starting in 2021-22.
The league is seeking bids from 12 territories in the European Economic Area: Bulgaria; Croatia; Czech Republic; Denmark (including Greenland and Faroe Islands); Finland; Hungary; Iceland; Norway; Portugal; Slovakia; Slovenia; and Sweden.
The tender is also open in four territories outside the EEA: Bosnia and Herzegovina; North Macedonia; Montenegro; and Serbia.
Major European markets such as the UK, Germany, Italy and France are not included in this tender.
However, broadcasters could get access to programming presently offered as part of LaLigaTV, a dedicated 24/7 television channel that the league has launched in the UK this season as part of a three-year rights deal with subscription broadcaster Premier Sports.
LaLiga will also be hopeful of significant uplift in the value of its rights in the Nordic region after England's Premier League recently signed a lucrative six-year renewal with Nordic Entertainment Group covering Denmark, Sweden, Finland and the new addition of Norway.
Bids forms and the required documentation can be submitted until the deadline of 12pm (CET) on 19 March by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Full terms and conditions are available at https://www.laliga.com/en-ES/audiovisual-rights/international-rights.
LaLiga remains committed to traditional media rights deals in foreign markets despite now having LaLigaSportsTV, an OTT platform which offers a variety of Spanish sports content, including soccer, futsal, basketball and handball, and is available internationally.
However, Javier Tebas, the president of LaLiga, told Sportcal last month: “It [LaLigaSportsTV] would never replace them [media rights deals], or not right now at least. What can happen sometimes is, because of the market conditions, you might not be able to reach agreements with different broadcast partners because of the tendering and because of a number of different issues.
“Our aim now is to ensure that all territories are able to see Spanish football. All fans should be able to watch quality football in every country and that’s why we have an over-the-top platform as well. Right now we are present in most countries and if it is a case of not being able to agree rights deals then we will be using the OTT platform.”