MultiChoice invests further in Ethiopia with Premier League deal

South Africa-based pay TV operator MultiChoice Group’s SuperSport service has added rights to the Ethiopian Premier League to its line-up of sports properties.

The Ethiopian Premier League is the top association football division in Ethiopia and comprises 16 clubs. Broadcasts of Ethiopian Premier League matches will be carried across the entire territory of sub-Saharan Africa and the adjacent islands, according to MultiChoice.

SuperSport will produce the broadcasts, alongside the use of local production staff.

MultiChoice has highlighted investments made by its pay TV arm DStv Ethiopia in local content such as the Ethiopian Premier League, Amharic language channels such as Zee Alem, Nick Jnr Amharic and local free-to-air channels.

“Through SuperSport, we are the leading broadcaster of sport in Africa, with our programming being viewed by millions of fans continent-wide. Sport is an integral part of our content offering and supporting the development of sport content makes sense for our business.  This partnership will give the Ethiopian Premier League greater visibility, attracting fans from across the continent,” said MultiChoice Group CEO Calvo Mawela,

Ethiopian Premier League chairman Lt. Fekade Mamo said: “We recognise the importance of having the right partners on board to contribute in growing our league and to cultivate local talent. This is a significant step forward for the league, and will create a brighter future for players, the industry, and bring Ethiopian football closer to the world.”
Competition is heating up between service providers in Ethiopia, the second-largest market on the continent by population after Nigeria with around 100 million people.

Canal+, which last week revealed that it has built a 6.5% stake in MultiChoice, recently announced the launch of what it described as the first premium DTH platform in Ethiopia with a 50-channel offering combining international services and local free-to-air broadcasters – the pay TV operator’s first major foray into a non-Francophone country in Africa.

Separately, the Association of Ethiopian Broadcasters (AEB) and the Ethiopian Broadcasting Corporation (EBC) has teamed up with satellite operator launch Ethiosat, a dedicated free-to-air platform for the country’s most popular channels.

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