Amazon buys United Kingdom rights to 20 Premier League matches
08 June, 2018, 02:51 | Author: Dominic Spencer
The US company will exclusively livestream all 10 matches over one bank holiday of Premier League games and another 10 during one midweek fixture programme, for three seasons from 2019.
This means that Amazon will be able to screen two full rounds of fixtures per season, for three seasons from 2019/2020 - thus becoming the first streaming-only service to offer Premier Leaguefootball.
The rest of the live United Kingdom broadcasting rights to Premier League soccer are shared between Sky and BT.
Sky Sports paid £3.58 billion ($4.8 billion) for 128 matches a season in February, while BT has the rights to 52 games.
Add BT Sport to your Sky TV package for £27.99 a month, plus a £20 fee, and Amazon for another £7.99 a month.
"We welcome Amazon as an exciting new partner and we know Prime Video will provide an excellent service on which fans can consume the Premier League".
In a statement, Amazon said: "This will be the first time a full round of Premier League fixtures will be broadcast live in the UK".
Audience figures continue to grow on BT Sport, with average viewing up 17% at the end of the most recent football season, while a BT Sport record-breaking 8.5 million people watched the UEFA Champions League final this year across our TV and digital platforms.
Amazon Prime, which includes free delivery on purchases as well as music and video content, costs 79 pounds ($106) a year in Britain.
Independent.ie understands that the prospect of a global Premier League television deal could be discussed in the near future, with one rights holder owner working in partnership with the league to broadcast the matches around the world. Amazon has now stepped in and scooped up one of those tranches of rights.
In a separate announcement the Premier League also agreed that there would be a change in the distribution of money gained from the foreign broadcast deal.
Premier League executive chairman Richard Scudamore said the league's revenue sharing remained the most equitable in Europe but it was time to amend an agreement dating back to 1992.
The Premier League offered 200 live matches a season to broadcasters, an increase from the 168 available in 2015.
Two of the seven packages of rights available had been left unsold in that last round of deal-making, with the EPL reportedly failing to get its original asking price.
The Premier League have also released details of the rights deals for the Republic of Ireland.
For Amazon, the deal is the latest example of its expansion into the world of live sports broadcasting.
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