Green light for football on Dutch Fox

November 30, 2012 11.15 Europe/London By Robert Briel

The Dutch competition authority NMa has given the green light for the launch of a new Fox channel on the Dutch market offering Dutch football, series and movies as a free-to-air broadcaster.

The new channel will broadcast short clips from football matches on the FTA channel, while the live rights will be broadcast on a premium multiplex.

Hernan Lopez, president and CEO of Fox International Channels, said, “We are looking forward to working with Eredivisie, KNVB and Endemol and leveraging the respective strengths of our partners to further develop the interests of the Dutch Premier Football League.”

Frank Carrere, SVP and head of corporate development for FIC, noted, “With our investments in Latin America, Asia, Africa and now Europe, FIC has secured a leadership position in key TV markets with substantial growth potential while furthering News Corporation’s commitment to delivering an unsurpassed sports viewing experience to consumers across the globe.”

Frank Rutten & Alex Tielbeke, both Managing Directors of EMM also added, “This is a tremendous opportunity for the Dutch clubs and our fans. Having a powerful partner like FIC join us, demonstrates great confidence in the organization and appreciation for what we have achieved to date. Together, we will build on our past success with ‘Eredivisie Live’ and will build an even stronger foundation for Dutch football going forward.”

Last August, Fox International Channels (FIC) has acquired a 51% stake in the Dutch football rights holder Eredivisie Media & Marketing CV for a fee, reportedly to be 1 billion euros.

The deal, which has been unanimously agreed by the 18 clubs in the Eredivisie Dutch premier football league, Dutch National Football Association (KNVB) and Endemol, will marry Dutch Eredivisie rights with FIC’s global expertise in sports and entertainment programming.

Besides handling all the corporate media and sponsorship rights on behalf of the Eredivisie, it has created the dedicated multiplex of football channels Eredivisie TV. The contract runs for a period of twelve years.