StarTimes wins Bundesliga broadcast rights for Nigeria, Sub-Saharan Africa

Digital television network, StarTimes is set to become the exclusive broadcast sponsor of the Bundesliga in Nigeria and the rest of the sub-Sahara Africa beginning in the 2015/16 season.

The deal leaves former broadcast partner SuperSport out in the cold, unable to re-secure a relationship that had been in place since 2010. At the time South African owned SuperSport was Africa’s leading pay broadcaster, reaching over 3.9 million subscribers in more than 50 countries. Since then the network has been eclipsed by the growth of StarTimes, a Chinese satellite television provider, operating in the continent through its StarSat brand.

Jorg Daubitzer, managing director of Bundesliga marketing subsidiary DFL Sports Enterprise Gmbh, underlined the importance of the broadcaster’s rapid growth to the league’s decision. “It was important for us to close the deal with StarTimes because the platform offers us the opportunity to reach millions of homes we didn’t reach before in this football-crazy continent. We see kids all over Africa playing at every available space and it is only fitting that we provide an opportunity for them to see one of the best football leagues in the world.”

The deal comes amid the opening of a new chapter in the Bundesliga’s quest for aggressive growth. Despite increasing name recognition over the past few years, particularly following the all-German Champions League final of 2013, the Bundesliga has yet to see the level of bumper deals enjoyed by the likes of their English and Spanish rivals. The difference in commercial interest was starkly highlighted earlier this year as the Premier League announced a domestic rights deal that represented four times the value being received by German clubs.

Things maybe set to change though with several new rights deals coming online, most notably distribution throughout North and Latin America through Fox Sports for five years beginning in 2015/16.

StarTimes wins Bundesliga broadcast rights for Nigeria, Sub-Saharan Africa

Adidas extend Bayern Munich deal 10 years for reported €900m

Photo credit: The 12elfth Man (

Bayern Munich and Adidas have extended their kit partnership for another 10 years in a bit of Bavarian Bundesliga business.  The sportswear maker will pay the club a reported $992m (€900m, £645m) to secure exclusive kit supply rights through 2030. The previous agreement, an 8 year extension signed in 2011, secured the rights through 2020 and was worth a reported $289m (€200m, £176m) at the time.

The two giants of German sports have been partners since the 1960s when Adidas’ trademark three stripes were first worn by the club.

Adidas’ extension is a significant increase over their previous sponsorship rate with Bayern. The 2011 renewal was worth $36m (€25m, £22m) per season, by contrast yesterday’s extension will bring in $66m (€60m, £43m) annually or an 83% increase in the kit supply revenue.

It’s unclear whether Adidas has only paid for 10 additional years or an entirely new 15 year deal which replaces the existing agreement. Regardless, Bayern’s new deal places them squarely in the elite of club branding, although Manchester United still reigns at the top with their £75m a year agreement with Adidas and Real Madrid finishing close behind with their deal.

Adidas extend Bayern Munich deal 10 years for reported €900m

Dortmund insured against Champions League absence

After a disastrous first half of the season Borussia Dortmund won’t be playing in the Champions League next year. Dortmund are currently 9th in the Bundesliga table and would not reach the qualification spots even with a perfect performance for the rest of the season.

The BVB faithful will be hard hit by the absence, having enjoyed Champions League competition for the past four years and even booking a final appearance against league rivals Bayern in the 2012-13 season. Although the missing European nights may sting, the missing prize and TV revenues may not sting as much. Bloomberg Business is reporting that the club holds an insurance policy which “protects against lost revenue from missing the tournament”. The level of coverage is unclear.

Some interesting points about the policy noted by the article:

  • Policy signed in 2012, renewed for a third time before the current season
  • 12 underwriters led by Catlin Group Ltd. and XL Group Plc
  • Underwriters would have had the option to cancel if Klopp or three of Dortmund’s top players had left the team during the year
  • Only three team executives were aware of the insurance policy, a requirement to prevent ‘tanking
  • Dortmund paying close to 30 percent of the amount insured

Hedging activity is increasingly common in the soccer world as clubs and their partners try to control the risk tied to performances on the pitch. Should hedging be allowed in the Premier League? Would it help clubs minimize risk or would it just be a safety net for underperformance?

Dortmund insured against Champions League absence

Jurgen Klopp to leave Borussia Dortmund at end of season

Borussia Dortmund have confirmed that head coach Jürgen Klopp is set to leave the club after the close of the 2014-15 season. Klopp stated in a press conference that he was unsure he was still the right manager for the club and that he needed to make a professional and honest decision to leave. The manager’s offer to cancel his contract is likely to be interpreted by the BVB faithful as a sign of his true respect for the club and genuine disappointment in his own performance.

The departure comes on the back of a difficult season for Dortmund who found themselves struggling near the bottom of the table going into the Bundesliga winter break. In his seven years as manager Klopp led the BVB to two Bundesliga titles, a DFB-Pokal and a Champions League final.

Asked about his future Klopp stated that he was not in contact with any clubs and would “focus 100% on the rest of the season and try hard to win the national cup”.

Jurgen Klopp to leave Borussia Dortmund at end of season