FFA announces new broadcast arrangements

Monday, 19 November 2012 11:28 AM

FFA announces new broadcast arrangements

Football Federation Australia (FFA) today announced a new set of broadcast arrangements that will provide unprecedented coverage and audience reach for the Qantas Socceroos and Hyundai A-League.

The four-year agreements with partners FOX SPORTS, Foxtel and SBS will provide Australian viewers with comprehensive, world-class coverage on multiple platforms, including subscription TV, free-to-air TV, internet and digital devices.

FFA Chairman, Frank Lowy AC, has hailed the new arrangements as the most valuable and important commercial agreements in Australian football’s history.

“FFA has been building the foundations for sustained growth with the success of the Qantas Socceroos, the consolidation of the Hyundai A-League and the popularity of our beautiful game with 1.7 million participants at the grassroots,” Mr Lowy said.

“Today, the new broadcast arrangements will give FFA an unprecedented opportunity to implement its strategic plans for Australian football.

“There’s never been any doubt that the game has a bright future in this nation, but today the football family can take comfort from the huge vote of confidence from our broadcast partners.

“FOX SPORTS, Foxtel and SBS are broadcasters who know football and care about the game. They will all be important partners in the exciting growth in the years ahead.”

Commencing from 1 July 2013, the new set of arrangements will deliver a total economic value of $160 million to Australian football. The economic value consists of $148 million in cash and $12 million in marketing support.

The average yearly licence fee for these broadcast arrangements is double the annual fee of the existing broadcast arrangements.

A renewed partnership with FOX SPORTS involving coverage of the Qantas Socceroos and Hyundai A-League is the key pillar of the new arrangements.

FOX SPORTS will provide exclusively live coverage of all Socceroos matches until 30 June 2017.

FOX SPORTS will continue as the primary broadcaster of Australia’s premier club football competition the Hyundai A-League, providing live coverage of all regular season and finals matches until 30 June 2017.

In addition, FOX SPORTS will be the Australian rights holder of the AFC Asian Cup Australia 2015, broadcasting exclusively live coverage of the 32-match tournament.

FOX SPORTS CEO, Patrick Delany, said the new broadcast agreement secures football’s future as one of the giants of summer on Foxtel.

“We see football as an essential part of the FOX SPORTS summer offering and our vision, together with Foxtel and FFA, is for football to become part of Australia’s summer fabric, whether it’s going to watch a Hyundai A-League game or kicking the ball around in a park or on the beach,” Delany said.

“Our investment in the game is unparalleled - $160 million over the past eight years - we love the game, and we’ll continue to deliver the most comprehensive and entertaining coverage for fans through our live and high definition coverage of the Qantas Socceroos, Hyundai A-League, and Barclays Premier League, plus our weekly magazine lineup of Kick Off, Matchday Saturday and Sunday Shootout,” he said.

“The Hyundai A-League is one of the most interesting and emerging competitions in Australian sport. It is wholesome family entertainment and it is attracting interest like never before. We have tremendous optimism for the future of football in Australia and are really excited to work with the FFA and Foxtel to push the game into an even stronger position.”

The renewal of the FOX SPORTS and FFA partnership will extend the relationship to 12 continuous years.

FFA CEO David Gallop has hailed FOX SPORTS for its commitment to growth and investment in Australian football.

“Without the capital investment and promotional support of FOX SPORTS, football would not be in the healthy position it finds itself in today,” Mr Gallop said.

“In 2005, FOX SPORTS joined forces with football to help rebuild the professional game in Australia. That single decision helped change the destiny of football in this nation.”

Under the new arrangements, SBS will provide free-to-air coverage on a one-hour delay of all Qantas Socceroos FIFA World Cup qualification matches played in Australia and overseas from now until 2017.

SBS has provided free-to-air coverage of the Qantas Socceroos’ past two 2014 FIFA World Cup Asian qualification matches against Jordan (11 September) and Iraq (16 October) under interim arrangements.

Commencing in the 2013/14 season, SBS will provide live free-to-air coverage of the Friday Night Hyundai A-League regular season match and a one-hour delay free-to-air coverage of all finals matches.

SBS Managing Director Michael Ebeid said SBS was proud to be part of a partnership that would give all Australians access to the Hyundai A-League and Qantas Socceroos.

“SBS has always championed the sports which unite communities and the world and with football being the world’s biggest game it is fitting that the Hyundai A-League and Qantas Socceroos will now have a free-to-air presence on SBS, building on our strong football pedigree,” Ebeid said.

“This deal is exciting news for football fans across the country and will give all Australians access to matches like never before.

“It’s a partnership which will help take the domestic game in Australia to the next level and SBS is excited to be working with the FFA and FOX SPORTS to help grow the game.

“Broadcast of the Socceroos will complement SBS’s FIFA World Cup coverage which SBS has the rights to all editions up to and including 2022.”

Mr Gallop has warmly welcomed SBS as another important partner in the growth story of Australian football.

“SBS will significantly extend the audience reach of our major games for the Qantas Socceroos and in the Hyundai A-League, with benefits for our fans, clubs and sponsors,” he said.

“The network has a long history of covering Australian football and today we open a new and exciting chapter together.”

Mr Gallop also welcomed Foxtel’s formal partnership with FFA in providing sponsorship and promotional support during the upcoming contract period.

“Foxtel recognises the value of football and its broad and diverse demographic family. The association will support Foxtel’s broad portfolio of football content,” he said.

Foxtel CEO, Richard Freudenstein, said that in 2005 Foxtel had backed FOX SPORTS and FFA to build a new vision for football and its broadcast in Australia.

“Eight years later we are seeing the fruits of a new summer sport with great young talent and international superstars - its young, cool and gathering interest from Australian families like never before,” Freudenstein said.

“It is our pleasure to again back FOX SPORTS and FFA with the addition of a new sponsorship aimed at grassroots football in Australia.”

How far will Western Sydney go in the AFC Champions League?

Comments (20)
that is fantastic for a league soccer if you consider friday saturday sunday games that is positble on every week if fox sports and foxtell agree with this that will be great for free to air thanks
james vantol  |  
27 Apr 2013 01:22 AM
What a great outcome. Fantastic news. Now we just need unbiased commentators and we would have a great coverage. Shame SBS couldnt pick up a Sunday game to televise on delay. And I did read someone comment on people sitting on their lazy asses and not attending. Channel 9 has had the NRL live for many years and people still pack those stadiums.
Josh  |  
24 Nov 2012 10:14 PM
Great to see a good deal and some much needed money coming into the game. I agree with everyone talking about the womens game though. Not enough televised games, and this is creating a smallleague that struggles, can't pay professional players and therefore no pathway from grass roots. The introduction of the APL is supposedly going to help to resolve this with essentialy a mandate to mirror the mens competitions at state level with womens teams, as well as a commitment to as many girls teams as mixed and boys in the junior divisions. I can say though that I went to the fury media presentation on the APL and how it will look, and it was decidedly lacking any information about the girls and womens side of the game. They had no information on what it will look like, or their level of commitment. I want to be optimistic that the women will finally get a fair deal. Honestly who can say that the womens world cup (the games that we got to see anyway) weren't exciting? I have been soccer mad for over 33 years from the UK to Australia, and I found their games to be faster, more attacking, and less focus on holding and retreating. Very exciting.
Dan Tsville  |  
23 Nov 2012 04:38 PM
this deal is just so good for the a-league. i guess del piero and heskey have a bit to do with this. now beckham in the news is going to be even more of a boost, let them come...but the big one, free to air tv arrangements on commercials and mainstream interest will only soar or sag with the performance of the "socceroos" during the run-up and peformance at the next world cup in brazil. shame that the "matildas" who have punched above their weight for years don't get much of a look-in up there, but women's football participation is so strong on grassroots levels.
mcLopez  |  
22 Nov 2012 11:43 AM
SBS is the only place that has ever shown any interest in this sport (SBS will always stand for Soccer Broadcasting Service in my mind!). Great idea to pin the SBS coverage to the Friday night game, as this way there's no confusion as to when to watch. Also, it gets the maximum possible audience thinking about the competition for the weekend. Will SBS be allowed to show full replays or delayed coverage of the other A-League matches?
Ricardo of Woy Woy  |  
20 Nov 2012 03:10 PM
No mention at all about W-League. Usual priorities within the game all related to men, even though we have a large population within the game that are female participants. With the W-League competition thriving, what incentive is there for young female athletes to get to the top when they can't even watch the best in their own game? Oh wait, yes, one game on ABC. At least that's a start but this is now season 5 and what has changed? How are we moving the game forward? The answer is we are not. Should the Women to play before the men? Even netball can get onto fox sports (not knocking netball, its a great sport) - but is there a need to market things differently? Perhaps a modified, faster version of the women's game? Bottom line - FFA needs to do better work here. Hopefully Gallop is the right man to do something. Potentially, we could make this the number one women's sport in this country but unless action is taken, potentially is all it will ever be.
W-LEAGUE ???  |  
20 Nov 2012 10:35 AM
It is fantastic news that FFA and SBS are committed to the future of the sport in Australia. It's a start. Soccer is the most popular sport in most countries it is broadcast on free-to-air tv. The A-league may, with the cash boost, be viable with a few more teams, which is required for a more competitive and more interesting league. Well done!
Daniel  |  
20 Nov 2012 02:02 AM
This is fantastic news. The free-to-air Friday night Hyundai A-League game is just the extra boost the game needs to get bigger coverage in Australia and thereby more fans involved in the game. It will help with grassroots with kids of any means will be able to see the game and connect with the local teams and have the own heroes in the A-League. This will breed the next generation of footballing stars!!
Mark  |  
19 Nov 2012 04:07 PM
I think this is as good as it can get for the present. As for getting a deal on the big three forget it, remember when 7 bought the rights to bury the game for AFL. Though I have foxtel, I have it for only one reason, football.Without Foxtel there would be no HAL. SBS still have a commercial component to their charter and is the only FTA that really gives a dam about football. But let it be clear, if FOX who I loathe did not have football and pay a decent price for it, I would not have it.
neil  |  
19 Nov 2012 03:04 PM
Fantastic news indeed! I hope the new deal will not impact the agreement with for those of us living overseas?
Bon  |  
19 Nov 2012 02:40 PM
I can't help but be concerned for attendances at games now. Due to FTA exposure, I fear people will sit on their lazy behinds and watch from their sofas instead of attending and putting cash in the pockets of their club.
Damaging  |  
19 Nov 2012 02:17 PM
Does this mean that the grass roots player's registration fees will be decreased because we wont have to keep funding so called 'elite' players? Do the right thing and reverse the flow of money from the ground up. AFL, League & Union support their grass root players, their park footballers, FFA must do the same.
Murray  |  
19 Nov 2012 01:59 PM
WIN, WIN, WIN! I think this is great news all round. The deal guarantees the mid to long term viability of the A-League clubs and allows them to focus on improving their economic models without immediate financial pressures. WIN! The deal rewards FOXSPORTS/FOXTEL for their faith and hard work, and the Friday night game on SBS will be great to watch for those of us without pay tv. WIN! The deal will bring greater 'mainstream' media exposure to our code and football will be seen by more and more 'newbies', who will then want to join in and be part of our great game!
Mark  |  
19 Nov 2012 01:50 PM
SBS Friday sounds good. the rest just means using the PC to watch games. I will never pay the company that hacked the dead girls phone in England. This set up is pathetic - 20% of people have paytv, and about a quarter of those pay for sports. 18 million potential viewers miss out
tony  |  
19 Nov 2012 01:47 PM
This looks like a solid deal to me. Given where we are in the sporting landscape and the recent expenditure on AFL and NRL we have done quite well. Getting it onto SBS is a plus but would have preferred it to be on a mainstream commercial channel. Having said that, SBS have the game at heart. It will also stop the whining Craig Foster. More sponsorship, albeit modest, should now flow into the game.
Well done FFA  |  
19 Nov 2012 01:43 PM
great comment from ben of bris! i came to oz 40 years ago and had very little response about football...but by now it's not quite us and them anymore in the main team sports (nrl - afl - cricket) still, until football gets into the commercial free to air channels it will just stay the "beautiful" game for the new grassroots and the one's that were raised as football kids themselves. it'll take probably more like 8 years...but as you know, the real excitement comes in overtime.
mcLopez  |  
19 Nov 2012 01:38 PM
A good deal but they've blown the chance to grow the game locally by not having any of the Asian Cup games on free to air. Why will I get to see so much overseas football and 1 game a week from the A-League? I'm in the nearly 70% of the population that DOESN'T have pay TV. It's FTA that will generate more interest in the game. Also, how is the money going to be spent? It costs twice as much for a junior to play football in my area than any of the other junior sports. How about a bit of relief for the parents?
LG  |  
19 Nov 2012 12:39 PM
Onwards and upwards. Love the fact that SBS will broadcast live one match a week. This means that the older folk who helped grow the game in Oz, and who don't have Foxtel or can't get to games like my father, can now can reconnect with the local game. Splendid.
Stevo  |  
19 Nov 2012 12:37 PM
Great to see SBS getting to provide coverage for the A-League games. Foxtels coverage is second to none but now with everyone able to see some games the game will expand.
Rob R  |  
19 Nov 2012 12:14 PM
A great step forward in having a weekly game on FTA. However, the FTA game needs to be on a (mainstream) commercial station so the associated media attention - weekly shows, celebrity appearances, ads, news articles, etc - are seem by the mainstream population. Not just those of us who only watch SBS and the ABC. Four more years to build, then we need a full blown commercial FTA deal.
Ben of BNE  |  
19 Nov 2012 12:00 PM