Dutch operators firm up Eredivise offer to pre-empt vote on extending ESPN deal

The Dutch consortium of operators that has combined to secure rights to the country’s top tier of football has firmed up a revised offer in response to doubts expressed by some clubs about the value of the deal on offer.

Delta Fiber, VodafoneZiggo, KPN and T-Mobile Netherlands, whidh previously tabled a bid to exploit the TV rights of the Eredivisie together with the clubs, said they wanted “to put an end to all the noise that has arisen in recent days” by guaranteeing the 18 Eredivisie clubs a minimum of €180 million net per year for the live rights. This was confirmed by letter to organising body the ECV and the clubs.

The consortium said that its existing proposal would potentially lead to total net earnings for the clubs rising to more than €200 million. However, they have now guaranteed by letter that a net amount of €180 million will go to the clubs every year no matter what.

According to the four, under the Eredivisie’s current arrangements, TV providers also pay approximately this amount, but to the current operater. They say their proposal would eliminate the middleman, making more money available directly to the clubs

Together with the clubs, a joint venture will be set up for the exploitation of rights. All other income in the joint venture, such as rights for highlights, currently €30 million per year, foreign rights, sponsorship and commercial premises rights, after deduction of production costs, will be divided so that 70% of the total will go to the clubs.

The consortium maintains that over €200 million will flow to the clubs, or more if the turnover continues to increase. In addition, the clubs will be given more freedom to exploit their own rights via online channels.

The proposal aims to pre-empt a vote set for May 8 by the clubs and ECV on whether to extend the deal with the current operator, Disney/ESPN.

The Consortium has askled the clubs not to and to be allowed to sit down with the ECV and clubs to further discuss and elaborate the proposal.

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