The UK and Irish sports broadcasting industry is set for a shakeup after the joint venture between BT Sport and Warner Bros. Discovery for the UK and Ireland has been closed
As BT Sport and Eurosport UK retain their separate brands for now, the pair will merge after an ‘undefined period of time’, according to reports.
The venture looks to “bring together one of the most extensive lineups of live sport coverage for fans in the UK and Ireland, including the Olympic Games, the Premier League, UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, Premiership Rugby, MotoGP, UFC, Boxing, WWE, tennis Grand Slams, cycling Grand Tours and the winter sports World Cup season.”
The 50:50 partnership was approved by the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) back in July.
In a statement, the pair also outlined: “As work begins to develop the new sports offering for the UK and Ireland, BT Sport and Eurosport UK will retain their separate product propositions for a period of time.
“BT Sport and Eurosport UK customers can continue to enjoy the current sport offerings in all the same ways they do currently. Over time, the intention is to launch a new sports brand in the market and present this combined sports offering together with an entertainment offering from Warner Bros. Discovery.”
The first Chairman was CEO of BT’s consumer division, Marc Allera, whilst Andrew Georgiou, President and CEO of Discovery Sports Europe of Warner Bros, is also a board member and is set to lead the enterprise.
BT will receive £93m from Warner Bros. Discovery and up to £540m by ‘way of an earn-out’ from the venture. Furthermore, the agreement will surpass 2030, and is said to include a minimum revenue guarantee of around £500m per annum for the first four years.