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Premier League to challenge Ofcom’s Sky ruling

The English Premier League will challenge the decision made by communication regulator Ofcom forcing BSkyB to sell its sports channels to rivals at a discounted rate.

Last month, Ofcom ruled that the pay-TV operator must reduce the wholesale price of its two main premium sports channels by 23.4%, from £13.88 (€15.63) to £10.63 per subscriber per month. Premier League chief Richard Scudamore said the decision had consequences for UK sport and sports fans that were “too serious and fundamental” to ignore.  “By forcing Sky to sell its sports channels to its competitors at a discount, Ofcom will reduce the incentives of all broadcasters, Sky included, to invest in the acquisition of sports rights. This can only have a negative impact on the ability of sport to attract a fair return on its content in an open market, which is necessary to ensure appropriate investment in maintaining the highest quality of that content,” he said.

Sky has already said it plans to appeal against the ruling to the Competition Appeal Tribunal, branding it “an unprecedented and unwarranted intervention”.