As predicted when I wrote that MultiChoice’s DSTV and GoTv could simply abandon European football rights in Nigeria, the satellite TV company is moving in that direction: “DSTV’s parent company is considering not to renew its premiership and UEFA Champions League broadcast rights when they expire”. The deteriorated naira value and the fact that DSTV cannot increase rates even as its raw material price is increasing are reasons noted. If MultiChoice follows that path, and does not renew, Nigerians may now depend on NTA, the national TV station, and the government for this luxury product.
MultiChoice seems to have been caught up in a difficult situation, the DSTV’s parent company is considering not to renew its premiership and UEFA Champions League broadcast rights when they expire.
ThisDay reported on Thursday that a source from the satellite TV company revealed how financial losses are forcing it to make the difficult decision not to renew for the 2021/22 football season.
The development was attributed to Nigerian business environment that has yielded low patronage, which does not make up for the cost of broadcast rights which the company said is exorbitant. Moreover, the free fall of naira against the dollar is said to have compounded the situation.
ThisDay quoted the source as saying: “It is becoming impossible to maintain many of these sports rights, especially the EPL, for Nigeria. The recent fall of the naira against the dollar has equally not helped matters.
“Rights for the African continent used to be bought singly, but this changed in 2007 when a competitor, backed by the federal government, forced the EPL to excise Nigeria from the rest of Africa. Now, the cost of the rights for Nigeria has risen to almost the same with the rest of the continent put together, while the number of subscribers in Nigeria is only about one quarter of the rest of the continent.”
Once NTA makes it tender to Europeans, it will notice one thing: the cost of this product has been rising: “The cost of English Premier League broadcast rights has risen almost 8% to 9.2 billion pounds ($12 billion) for the next three seasons”. If you make it a direct correlation, it simply means that DStv should be increasing costs by 8% over the next few years. But in Nigeria, even though naira is losing value to the euro or pounds sterling, DStv is expected to freeze its rates. That does not make sense!
Technically, unless MutiChoice has changed its business charter to non-profit, it has no business in Nigeria. When you add the new muted plan to force it to license its expensive London luxury product to local players, at Umuahia rate, you will understand the outcome. Yes, MultiChoice will abandon Nigeria and will not renew its EPL rights unless Nigeria allows it to increase rates, to compensate for increasing cost of the raw material and naira deterioration.
Hello Kano Pillars & Enyimba! Yes, local sports teams are still there.
The statistic depicts the revenue from the Premier League television broadcasting rights from 1992 to 2019. From 2013 to 2016 the Premier League generated over 3 billion pounds in revenue from its marketing of TV broadcasting rights per year. (source: statista)
With (1) rising cost of EPL license, (2) deteriorating value of the naira, (3) government interference in pricing and (4) a detached-from-reality expectation by customers for the company to offer PAYG, it is quite probable that the numbers no longer stack up and the company wants to quit. It may well be that the only option of watching EPL in Nigeria is via streaming on pirate websites and over expensive and sub-optimal connections. Good luck to all the viewers.