NBC Sports nabs six-year extension for English Premier League football
| 11 August 2015
NBC Sports Group has inked a six-year extension on its exclusive rights to carry English Premier League football games in the US.
NBC had signed a three-year deal ahead of the 2013 season for about $250 million, which expires after this year. Facing other bidders, a "nervous, anxious" NBC worked through the weekend to secure the deal after bidding on Thursday, according to the Wall Street Journal. Rival ESPN reportedly didn't bid on the rights.
The deal will be for a higher price than the current one. Comparing mark-ups, the Premier League recently sold UK pay-TV, rights for $7.8 billion for three seasons, up from $4.7 billion for the 2013-2016 period. Viewership of the league for NBC was up 9% year-over-year last season.
NBCUniversal separately last week announced that basic cable net USA Network would air more than 40 Premier League weekend matches this season.
NBC said Premier League viewership on NBC and NBCSN averaged 479,000 viewers last season per match, up 9% from the prior season. The league plays 380 matches per year.