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Viaplay to sell UK sports operation back to Premier Sports

Struggling Nordic streamer Viaplay has agreed to sell Premier Sports in the UK back to the company it bought it from.

Viaplay acquired Premier Sports’ UK operation last year, rebranding its channels and taking over sponsorship of the Scottish League Cup.

The Viaplay-branded channels will now return to Premier Sports ownership. The deal is subject to regulatory approval.

The agreement will mark the return of Premier Sports to the UK market. The channels hold the rights to Scottish national team football as well as the League Cup, and will also broadcast the Scottish Cup, where they share rights with BBC Scotland.

Other rights held by the unit included Spanish football from La Liga and Coppa Italia football, as well as United Rugby Championship, Rugby Football League and Top 14 rugby.

Premier Sports have said it will offer an enhanced streaming service alongside its broadcast channels, which will continue to be available on the Sky, Virgin media and Amazon Prime platforms.

Viaplay struck a deal to acquire Premier Sports in the UK last year in a £30 million deal and hired DAZN executive Edward Breeze to run the operation.

The sale is in line with Viaplay’s move to withdraw from markets outside its core Nordic territories and the Netherlands after an expansion drive that saw it launch in multiple territories including Poland and the UK.

That strategy unravelled earlier this year as the streamer faced multiple headwinds that forced it to wind down its plans and make significant cost savings, with former CEO Anders Jensen being replaced by Jørgen Madsen Lindemann.

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