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Warner Bros Discovery, BT close JV transaction, intend to launch new sports brand into UK market

A new sports brand will be launched "over time", which will be combined with an entertainment offering from WBD

Warner Bros Discovery (WBD) and BT have closed the transaction on their new 50:50 joint venture that combines the assets of BT Sport and Eurosport UK.

The deal was first announced announced in May, with BT Sport CEO Jamie Hindhaugh telling TVBEurope at the time that innovation would remain at the core of the JV.

Following the announcement that the transaction has now been completed, the two companies said BT Sport and Eurosport UK will retain their separate product propositions for a period of time.

Their plan is to launch a new sports brand in the market “over time” which will be combined with an entertainment offering from WBD.

The JV’s board of directors is equally represented between appointees of BT and WBD. The first chairperson, nominated by each shareholder on a rotating basis, is Marc Allera, CEO BT’s Consumer division. Andrew Georgiou, president and managing director, Warner Bros. Discovery Sports Europe, is also a member of the board and will lead the business.

Speaking about the closing of the transaction, Allera said: “As we enter our ninth season, today is day one of an exciting new chapter for BT Sport.  I am extremely proud of the teams and the established brand and broadcaster that BT Sport has become, and I look forward to working with Warner Bros Discovery to create an exciting new sport TV offering for the UK.”

Andrew Georgiou added: “Today marks the start of our journey to build a new sports destination for fans in the U.K and Ireland. Combining BT Sport and Eurosport UK together with Warner Bros Discovery’s world-class and growing entertainment offering will result in an exciting new proposition for consumers.”