Despite the success of the German Bundesliga clubs in last season’s UEFA Champions League, their Indian partner, Star India won’t be renewing their contract.
This is a set back for a league that is set to begin in another two weeks. Bayern Munich had won the competition while RB Leipzig reached the last four.
Indian broadcaster, but Star India is yet to negotiate a new deal to broadcast the Bundesliga, leaving the Indian subcontinent that has over 1.7 billion people with no legal means of watching one of the top five leagues in Europe.
According to reports, Indians are the second-largest contingent of Bundesliga visitors, and the monthly numbers from the region have been steadily going up. This is commensurate with the league’s increasing popularity in the country.
So, stopping the broadcasts has now killed that growth and potential for the future.
Non-renew of broadcasting right deal bad for German Bundesliga and Bayern Munich especially
Having won the European clubs top prizes, Bayern Munich is expectedly the most affected club in the Bundesliga.
The Bavarians have been watched recently by millions of people worldwide and now would have been the perfect opportunity to market the league as the home of the best team in Europe. This is could have been a watershed moment for the league in the region as well.
India whose sport is predominantly cricket has started developing more interested in football. Since Bayern won the treble, the interest in the 2020 champions should be a unique incentive for a broadcaster to picked the league up for the coming years.
This means that Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, Schalke, Gladbach, Leverkusen fans in India are out of luck.
The interesting part is that Star is not ready to even fork over 1.5 million dollars per season to renew the league’s broadcasting deal despite paying over 7.5 million dollars per match to broadcast the Indian Premier League (i.e. cricket).
SABC to show Bundesliga for two seasons
In another development, the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) has announced the partnership with DFL, the governing body of the German Bundesliga to broadcast the league games for the next two seasons.
This is now one of the biggest deals for the embattled national television company as they have been televising the English Premier League on SABC 3.
“There has been an enormous amount of effort that has gone into making this deal happen and we are very happy to partner with the DFL in bringing football from one of the world’s best leagues to viewers right across the country.
“The Bundesliga is a very attractive football proposition and South Africans will now get an open window through which to watch some of the game’s most iconic football rivalries, in a league displaying exquisite technique and an abundance of passion, from one of the world’s great football nations,” SABC sport general manager Gary Rathbone confirmed.
SABC 3 and the SABC Sport will be airing the games live.