In a move which could have repercussions across the South American sports media market, Spanish company Mediapro has acquired the rights to Formula 1 across the continent and plans to launch a channel dedicated to the sport.
Mediapro has secured Formula One rights, covering free-to-air and subscription platforms, from 2015 to 2019 across central and southern America and the Caribbean, areas which have a combined potential viewership of around 400 million.
The deal does not include Brazil, but includes key markets such as Mexico.
Unconfirmed reports suggested that the deal may be worth US$ 100 million to Formula One but the wider context is that it will represent a dramatic entrance by Mediapro into an increasingly competitive South American market, where ESPN and 21st Century Fox have already established themselves as the major sports pay-television players.
Mediapro, which is based in Barcelona, already holds the Spanish broadcast rights to Formula One, renewed its deal for a further two years to cover 2014 and 2015 in October last year.
The company said that sports rights made up around 35 per cent of the group’s overall turnover in 2013.
Meanwhile Bloomberg reports that Mediapro plans to start a regional 24-hour Formula One channel after acquiring the series’ rights for most of Central and South America and the Caribbean. (SportsPro)
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