Serie A approves domestic rights tender process

Lega Serie A - InsideSport

Lega Serie A has approved the tender process for its next set of domestic broadcast rights. The announcement came from the organising body of top-tier Italian football clubs, following an ordinary assembly meeting on Thursday in Milan.

The tender documents with the revised process will be released on Saturday.

The offer includes the rights for the three seasons spanning from 2018-19 to 2020-21. The tender will be split into packages aimed at pay-television operators, digital terrestrial television platforms, and internet outlets, along with a subordinate tender intended for independent financial intermediaries. According to Italian newspaper Il Sole 24 Ore, 18 of Serie A’s 20 clubs have voted in favour of the approved tender, with Napoli and Roma being the two absentees.

Serie A extraordinary commissioner Carlo Tavecchio said in a statement: “There are two very distinct calls to be published on Saturday at the Lega Serie A website. It was a long, correct and important course supported by the league structure, which absolutely had to reach this goal.”

Offers under the tender process will be accepted through to January 22. The launch was initially scheduled for the end of December but was postponed so that interested parties and the league would not be forced to work on the process over the Christmas holiday period.

The league has been forced to formulate the new rights auction process after Italian media group Mediaset refused to participate in the last tender and the only bidders’ tabled offers did not meet expectations.

Mediaset had refused to participate in protest after filing a complaint with Italy’s anti-trust authority, the AGCM, over the structure of the sales process, which the broadcaster claimed favoured pay-television rival Sky.

In October, the IMG agency and State broadcaster Rai emerged triumphant in the international media rights sales process run by Serie A, sealing agreements worth a total of €1.113bn ($1.318bn).

Global broadcast rights to Serie A were awarded to IMG earlier, while Rai landed the Italian Communities package, across the three seasons spanning from 2018-19 to 2020-21. Rai’s contract is for a dedicated Italian-language package specifically intended to serve expatriate Italian communities.