DAZN’s attempt to buy BT Sport appears to be edging closer with reports a deal could be agreed between the two sides this month.
According to Reuters, DAZN is set to pay £582 million ($800 million) to enter the UK sports rights market. If the deal does go through it would give the sports streamer rights to both Premier League and UEFA Champions League, Europa League and Europa Conference matches in the UK.
However, the deal is still to meet some final hurdles and could still not happen said the report, which cites four sources familiar with the matter.
DAZN has been the frontrunner to acquire BT Sport ever since BT revealed it was looking to possibly sell the service last year.
In December, it was rumoured Discovery was looking to hijack the deal and was holding discussions with BT about a possible joint venture between the two companies.
According to Reuters, Discovery is still in discussions but DAZN is seen as the leading contender.
It’s thought BT Sport currently has around 5 million subscribers in the UK.
According to analyst Paolo Pescatore “it’s now or never” for the deal to go through given the market dynamics and merits of a sale for both parties.
“For sure, DAZN needs more than boxing in the UK,” he adds. “The Premier League domestic TV rights extension strengthened BT’s bargaining position. The wannabe Netflix of Sports cannot wait another three years at a minimum to get these lucrative sports rights. Ultimately, DAZN cannot afford to replicate the technical challenges seen in Italy which reinforces the notion of acquiring a credible provider in the UK rather than doing solely on its own.”
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