So the BBC has lost the main TV rights to the Olympics Games from 2022 to Eurosport. The blow to the BBC came after the US broadcasting giant Discovery, owner of Eurosport, signed a £920m exclusive pan-European deal.
The initial question on many license payers’ lips is ‘Is there much value for money in paying the fee, with this and the recent Top Gear saga?’
It’s looking bad for the BBC as the decision to grant the main rights to Eurosport will most likely make them lose the audience they had developed over the years – Formula 1 being a prime example when it went to Sky Sports.
The decision is a blow to the BBC, which has poured huge resources and set great store by its Olympics coverage as one of the moments when it is able to bring the nation together.
“It will divide the country in terms of wealth. The whole idea of Olympics is that everybody can watch it together regardless of whether you can pay for it or not”, Latoya Gayle from Chester told TNT.
With subscriptions for Eurosport player starting from £3.99 – allowing you to watch all their sports channels – the network of channels provides viewers with European and international sporting events.
In a statement, Discovery said it was committed to broadcasting a minimum of 200 hours of the Olympic Games and 100 hours of the Olympic Winter Games on free-to-air television, during the games period.
Thomas Bach, the president of the International Olympic Committee, said: “The revenue generated from this long-term partnership will be redistributed by the IOC across the Olympic Movement to support the development of sport around the world.”
The 2016 Olympics will be held in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil and the 2018 Winter Olympics will be Pyeongchang, South Korea, while 2020’s event will take place in Tokyo, Japan.
The host city for the 2022 Winter Olympics will be announced at the end of July.