Germany’s DFL suspends football auction on DAZN complaint

The German football league, the DFL, has suspended its media rights auction for the first time after sports streamer DAZN complained to the country’s competition watchdog that it was being treated unfairly.

Source DAZN

The DFL took the extraordinary step of suspending the rights auction for the 2025-29 seasons after DAZN complained to the Federal Cartel Office, the Bundeskartellamt, that the league had rejected its offer for package B, which includes Bundesliga matches on Fridays and Saturdays,

DAZN’s contention is that the league is unduly favouring Sky in the negotiations. Sky currently holds the rights to package B, seen as the most attractive of the packages on offer.

The DFL for its part maintains that the DAZN bid lacked sufficient financial guarantees, according to local reports, something DAZN has refuted. According to the sports streamer, the DFL demanded a bank guarantee at short notice in the middle of the tendering process, a request that it said was impossible to meet. DAZN had been willing to provide a binding letter of commitment, along with a guarantee from its majority owner Access Industries.

The DFL has rejected DAZN’s account of what happened.

“DAZN has concerns with elements of the process and has raised these issues directly with the DFL. DAZN remains committed to delivering value for the Bundesliga, its member clubs and their fans. We will not comment further on this topic at this stage,” DAZN told DTVE.

Earlier this year, the Bundeskartellamt approved the DFL’s marketing model for the current round of bidding, dropping the controversial requirement that no single buyer should be able to acquire DFL rights.

The watchdog said that there was now more competition in the market for live event broadcasting, with a large number of players competing in the market.

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