Paramount restores U.S. rights to Champions League valued at $1.5 billion

Paramount Global restored its U.S. media rights to Champions League football matches in an offer valued at more than $1.5 billion over 6 years, more than doubling the size of its previous agreement in an indication of the sport’s growing appeal with Americans.

The owner of the CBS network and Paramount+ streaming service will air the yearly competition including Europe’s leading football groups under a brand-new contract that ranges from 2024 to 2030. Paramount will pay about $250 million each year, up from about $100 million a year under the previous offer, according to individuals acquainted with the matter.

The Union of European Football Associations, or UEFA, had actually been looking for about $2 billion over 6 years for the English- and Spanish-language rights integrated, however chose to hold back on selling Spanish rights due to the fact that the streaming market for that audience is still in its early days, individuals stated. TelevisaUnivision Inc., which presently owns the Spanish-language rights, released a brand-new streaming service called Vix+ in July. Meanwhile, its competitor, Telemundo, prepares to begin a material center on Peacock, the streaming service owned by its moms and dad, Comcast Corp.

The brand-new offer with Paramount confirms the Champions League as one of the most important European football residential or commercial properties in U.S. media and is additional proof of the skyrocketing expense of sports rights. In November, Comcast Corp.’s NBC concurred to pay more than $2.5 billion over 6 years to restore the U.S. rights to broadcast English Premier League matches. That was almost triple the expense of its previous offer. Apple Inc. is paying a minimum assurance of $250 million each year for Major League Soccer rights, nearly triple the worth under the previous contract, according to Sports Business Journal.

Paramount is wagering the sport will continue to get appeal in the U.S. The Champions League last in between Real Madrid and Liverpool drew in 2.8 million audiences on its CBS network in May, the biggest U.S. audience ever for a last video game broadcast on English-language tv. It likewise was the biggest streaming audience for a match on Paramount+.

Before deciding on Paramount, UEFA likewise had initial conversations for the Champions League rights in the United States with Comcast’s NBC, Walt Disney Co.’s ESPN, Inc., Apple, Fox Corp., Warner Bros. Discovery Inc., Univision and DAZN, according to individuals, who asked not to be recognized due to the fact that the talks were personal. In completion, Paramount and Amazon made the 2 greatest quotes, individuals stated.

“UEFA has been a key driver for Paramount+ since our launch and we are thrilled to extend this successful partnership showcasing even more world-class soccer through the 2029-30 season, building on the incredible momentum we have created the past two years,” stated Sean McManus, chairman of CBS Sports.

For UEFA, it was an especially great minute to work out a brand-new agreement. Not just are media business ready to pay more for sports rights, the U.S. is likewise hosting the World Cup in 2026, which is most likely to create more enjoyment around the sport.

The bidding procedure for the Champions League was run by Relevent Sports Group, which was co-founded by Miami Dolphins owner Stephen M. Ross. In February, Relevent won the rights to broker UEFA’s U.S. media offers, vanquishing other firms such as Octagon and Endeavor’s IMG by assuring to offer the rights for a minimum of $250 million a year.

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News and digital media editor, writer, and communications specialist. Passionate about social justice, equity, and wellness. Covering the news, viewing it differently.

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