AFL Broadcast Rights: Place Your Bets

The current agreement between Seven, Foxtel and the League to screen AFL matches expires at the end of the 2016 season, but as Johnson Leung reports for the Australian Football Association of North America, the bidding war for the next round of television broadcast rights is about to get underway.

The AFL will formally start negotiations for the next domestic broadcast rights deal, that could last between five and ten years and bring in as much as A$3 billion for the period. The current five-year, $1.253 billion broadcast deal (equivalent to US$1.37 billion at the time of announcement) with Channel Seven and Foxtel does not expire until the end of the 2016 season. However the AFL has repeatedly stated it is keen to complete a new agreement by the end of 2015, as the League cashes in on demand from the networks for live sports content. Discussions opened in November, after Chief Executive Gillon McLachlan returned from a short post-season break in early October, and took his plan for the ten year deal to the AFL Commission. Once it is approved, the League will issue tender documents to the commercial networks (Seven, Channel Nine and Channel Ten) and Foxtel…”  Click here to read the full article.

As Tim Harcourt mentions, it’s an interesting time in the evolution of media to be exploring long-term broadcasting commitments. What do you think would be the best outcome for fans? Do you watch games on your smartphone or tablet devices?



  1. Craig Wright says

    I think Ten would be a good show… I think I initially read that Ten are looking to do up to 6 events live. If we look at the likely full V8 events Ten will cover in the footy season, the Darwin event in June is in Round 12 of the AFL (one of the Bye rounds), and the only other major one which would impact would be the Sandown 500 which is in Week 1 of Finals. The West Coast Eagles play in Perth on the Saturday night of the weekend of the Perth event on May 2, so it could be marketed as super ‘Saturday’. The others I’d say they’d look at would likely be the season opener in Adelaide in Feb, the F1 GP in March (not impacted by the AFL this season and usually starts the week after the GP anyway), Bathurst, potentially Auckland in Nov and the Finale in Syd in Dec. With a close alliance with Foxtel in the making, I think they could do a rewarding deal with FoxFooty. I also think that there will be a move towards similar to baseball (and a number of other sports) where the controlling interest ‘owns’ it product and ‘leases’ it out and networks will bid for timeslots as opposed to which ‘marquee’ games they get, and this will influence the 2016 fixture.

  2. Barkly St End says

    The deal will be worth well over $1.5 billion for 5 years, so if it was to be a 10 year deal, you’d have to think it would be worth well over $3 billion.

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