French BeIn Sport claims over 1m subs

November 8, 2012 11.02 Europe/London By Robert Briel

Al-Jazeera’s sports channels in France, BeIN Sport 1 and 2, have attracted over 1 million subscribers since their launch earlier this year.

BeIn Sport CEO Naseer al-Khelaifi told Les Echos that the channels aim to break even by 2016 or 2017. BeIn benefited from the Olympics and other big sports events this year. The two channels launched on June 1 and July 28.

The company would not comment on what it has paid for broadcasting rights to Euro 2012, the Olympics, French Ligue 1 football, the Champions League, the NBA and other content.

Al-Khelaifi told the newspaper that the Qatari company’s budget was not unlimited and that Formula 1 was not a priority right now, which seems to leave at least this door open to incumbent pay-TV operator Canal Plus.