Report: 10 bids $3b for AFL rights

10 reportedly wants all the rights, including digital rights, some matches on 10 and the remainder on Paramount+.

10 has bid a record $3b for AFL rights according to a media report.

The Australian reports 10 is understood to have told AFL executives it would be keen to have all the rights, including digital rights, telecasting some matches on its main free-to-air channel and the remainder on Paramount+ streaming.

Incumbents Foxtel and Seven are still considered favourites to maintain their package of rights, but the AFL hopes the 10 offer, which sources say is worth $600m annually over at least five years, will ignite a bidding war.

Foxtel and Seven had previously clinched a record $2.508bn deal with the AFL for six years from 2017, though the terms for Covid-affected years were later reduced when the pandemic hit.

The AFL hopes to secure a deal by the end of July or early August.

10 and an AFL declined to comment.

35 Responses

  1. ” some matches on its main free-to-air channel”
    Oh dear. So it’s all about paying top dollar for the broadcasting/streaming rights and then the broadcaster claiming they can’t afford to show matches for free.
    Hopefully the new Labor government will uphold the anti-syphoning laws and ensure all AFL and cricket matches played in Australia are available free. If some viewers want to pay for no ads or a fancy camera angle, good on them!

    1. Spot on. The real issue here is which channel will guarantee at least the FTA games that we have now. And that the anti-syphoning laws are used for the purpose they were designed for (not like the failure of cricket we have seen).

      1. Fiona
        some rounds (in Melbourne) we’re getting only two matches shown on FTA.
        About ten years ago when 9 had the rights we got 5 matches out of 8, albeit not all were live.

  2. I believe Foxtel will push themselves to the brink of bankruptcy to ensure they retain the STV rights. In recent years they have lost far too many codes and competitions from their owned and operated (Fox Sports) and third party (beIN and ESPN) networks to the new streamers (e.g. tennis grand slams and rugby union to Stan Sports, A League to Paramount+, soccer comps to Optus Sports and Stan Sports). Given this they will bet the house to ensure they don’t lose a tent pole like the AFL or NRL which keeps loyal subscribers year round keeping subscriber churn as low as possible. So my hunch is 10/Paramount+ might try and play with the big boys but will lose out if they try to get the rights all to themselves.

  3. Let’s put this $3billion into context here. Paramount has passed $1billion in earnings in just under a month with Maverick Top Gun. And that’s 1 movie in their catalogue. Imagine their other hits??? I think the $3 billion over 5 years is a strategic move on their behalf. Remember this is revenue that SWM and NIne just do not have.

  4. Well we shall see what happens shall we. I see that some people are saying it should have gone to save Neighbours. As David has pointed out if the numbers were there, they could have the numbers started going down before it went to Eleven Peach, I am a fan, but its days were numbered. I say good on them for doing 37 years. Congratulations.

    I hope that another Broadcaster does the AFL and we may see Geelong win again.., I may be wrong but I dont think Geelong has won a premiership while the AFL was on Seven.

  5. Now this is a curveball! Personally, I’d love to see the AFL on 10, it could maybe booster their overall ratings, something they have struggled with, year-on-year, for many years?

      1. Dear David, I know it’s speculation on top of speculation, but usually with AFL and NRL, there is a clause about games being screened on the primary channel (at least in certain markets). From memory, the current NRL contract will overlap with the new AFL contract so if the “primary channel” clause is there for both, Nine have a problem.

        1. Not really as the NRL screens on 9GEMHD in non NRL States as is and the AFL on 7MateHD in non AFL States. Take Melbourne on a Friday Night 9HD screens Children’s Hospital and 9GEMHD NRL, so all that would mean if they won the AFL rights is that the AFL Friday Night Game would replace Children’s Hospital.

          As to below with the Swans/Giants Game, I would think that the AFL would fixture that Game on a Saturday Night when 9 don’t show NRL as it’s generally on 9Now that night.

      2. If Nine were to bid hard for AFL, this could be very good for the network and this would help boost the ratings shares in the southern states. However, the problem is that 9 lost a lot of AFL Footy show presenters over the past few years. Nine need to start recruiting more people to the network – they need to hire decent callers. Another big problem is the north states – If NSW get the Swans/Giants games, they will have to move the games to GEM, when the NRL games are on.

  6. So let me get this right. On Wednesday Paramount was set to sell Channel 10 in a couple of years (Even if it’s true , these types of stories are always denied). Three days later Channel 10 has $3 billion cash to get the AFL in a couple of years.

    So either:
    Paramount is donating the money as a parting gift to thank Australians for making them No 1 ..er.. 2.. er 3..
    Paramount wants to stay and glorify more future Sydney road protestors on The Project (hope you’re OK).

      1. Can we believe these reports in the Australian given it is a Murdoch publication associated with foxtel who is also bidding for afl rights? Why would afl want to award rights to a broadcaster that will be sold in two years? Maybe the afl should stay with foxtel!
        And I would think the biggest broadcast rights in the country would be fairly confidential. How can this figure be leaked? So tell us how much seven/foxtel have bid too!
        All sounds a bit fishy to me! But hope 10 get the rights. Time to change!

      2. That’s the way I’m seeing it, they bid for the AFL for 10 and Paramount+ which would start in 2025. The sale window of 10 mentioned was 2 years, which means if they get the AFL Rights, they then have a selling point of interest to potential buyers/investors when selling 10 (ie: look we have the AFL), so it then gets shared between the new owners of 10 and Paramount+

  7. I wish that they have a new telecaster for the footy. 7’s coverage is boring and commentators continue with their own jokes instead of calling the game. The time for a new approach in afl broadcaster is decades overdue.

  8. I smell a rat here. TEN already has A-league which has been a very lame result for them. I think they might be playing a game here . This will increase the rights cost for the successful bidder. TEN is supposed to be getting sold. Something isnt right here.

  9. I am wondering if TEN is doing some mischief making here to force Seven to pay more. TEN is in trouble with the A-League. The Saturday night ratings are a basket case. How could they support two major codes. With the rumour circulating the CBS will off load TEN within two years something doesnt add up. Reminds me of a bidding war at ahouse auction where someone contrives to bid for a home forcing the genuine player to pay more thereby damaging them and still getting a good price. AFL’s ratings whilst stellar still poor in Sydney and Brisbane and 3 Billion Bucks aint going to fix that. Something is wrong with this report me thinks.

  10. The majority of viewing numbers are from Melbourne. Take last nights numbers for instance 447,000 total with 258,000 Melbourne. Take out Melbourne numbers and you are left with only 180,000 total from other states. How does that work for an advertiser. Take a long time to a 3b investment being returned in adverting revenue when it is only rates big numbers one state. Do Channel seven actually run AFL at a loss as they did with the Tennis but use it mainly a lead in ?

    1. Usually the numbers are decent in Melbourne, Adel and Perth. One could make a similar argument about the NRL being focused on Sydney and Brisbane (but we are talking smaller $ and viewing numbers). I don’t see Foxtel allowing the rights from their grasp….perhaps seven but they would be left without a Winter sport; but for seven something has to give; they can’t keep the cricket, afl, Olympics and Comm games.

  11. Imagine if the AFL switched broadcasters (from 2025). What would the investment in the broadcast be from Seven and Fox for their remaining two years I wonder?

  12. I wish 10 all the best , AFL on 7 is not good it messes with the home and away schedule and cuts better homes and gardens from the main channel in half then the rest on 7two when the match starts

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