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Deutsche Telekom mulling assault on football rights

German telco Deutsche Telekom is planning a serious assault on rival Sky Deutschland’s hold on Bundesliga football rights, according to local press.

According to press reports, Telekom wants to bid not only for IPTV rights it currently holds but also for satellite rights, following the launch of the satellite version of its Entertain TV service.

A bid by Telekom could raise regulatory concerns because the German state still has an interest in the telco. One possibility that has been raised is that Telekom could sub-license the rights from former Kirch Group executive Dieter Hahn’s media group. However, Der Spiegel magazine has reported that Telekom is considering making a bid for the rights on its own, with Hahn’s group possibly distributing the cable rights, which are sold by the German football league, the DFL, in a single package with the satellite rights.

The next round of bidding for Bundesliga rights is expected to begin in the spring. Sky is unlikely to give up the rights without a fight. Last week News Corp committed to increase the pay TV group’s capital by €300 million.