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Eurosport gains TV rights for four Olympics

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IOC President Thomas Bach. Photo: Richard Juilliart AFP
15:11 CEST+02:00
The Lausanne-based International Olympic Committee announced on Monday that it had handed all broadcast rights in most of Europe to Eurosport, owned by Discovery Communications, for the four Olympic games between 2018 and 2024.

"Discovery acquired the exclusive rights, valued at  1.3 billion ($1.4 billion), across all platforms, including free-to-air television, subscription/pay-TV television, internet and mobile phone in all languages across 50 countries and territories on the European continent," IOC said in a statement.

It said that broadcast rights in Russia were not included in the deal, and that the rights in France and Britain had already been attributed for the 2018-20 period, to France Television and the BBC respectively.

 The agreement covers the 2018 winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, the 2020 Tokyo summer Games, as well as the 2022 and 2024 Games, for which the host cities have yet to be elected.
IOC said that with an average of ten channels in every market, Eurosport's coverage of the Games would reach more than 700 million people across the continent.
"This agreement ensures comprehensive coverage of the Olympic Games across Europe, including the guarantee to provide extensive free-to-air television coverage in all territories," IOC President Thomas Bach said in the statement.

"We think this is really a perfect match," Bach told reporters in a telephone conference, adding that the deal marked "the first
time that one single media company has acquired all the rights across Europe".

He added: "This agreement ensures comprehensive coverage of the Olympic Games across Europe, including the guarantee to provide extensive free-to-air television coverage in all territories."   

Jean-Briac Perrette, head of Discovery Networks International, hailed the "unmatched technical prowess" of Eurosport, which his company took over last year.
"Eurosport's . . . ability to deliver the Olympic Games to 50 countries in 20 languages across multiple platforms is an important win for sports fans," Perrette said.
"We are thrilled and humbled to partner with one of the most recognized and powerful global brands," he said.

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