Astro may be ready to share live EPL matches with TM

Speculation is rife that Astro and Telekom Malaysia (TM) will share broadcast rights for some of the English Premier League (EPL) football matches over the next three seasons with a collaboration deal set to be signed tomorrow.

A signing ceremony between the two companies will be held tomorrow, to be attended by Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek, pertaining to a collaboration that will "bring local and international sports to more Malaysians".

It was previously reported that Astro paid around RM1 billion for broadcasting rights to the 2013-14, 2014-15 and 2015-16 EPL seasons, following the increasing popularity of the EPL locally.

However, the Malaysian Communication and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) issued content guidelines in May last year that sports content of national significance must be shared with free-to-air (FTA) providers and other pay-TV providers.

The Sun reported that analysts view the possible tie-up to be positive for TM in the long run, but are concerned over the premium content cost that TM needs to pay Astro.

It is estimated that TM has a budget of between RM100 million and RM120 million for content cost per year. - July 31, 2013.


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