Nine, Foxtel rugby match nears finish

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian – Page: 18 : 15-Oct-20

Sources have indicated that a decision on Rugby Australia’s next broadcasting rights deal could be made within days. Rugby Australia has held meetings with executives from Foxtel and Nine Entertainment, and the discussions are said to be "well advanced". Foxtel currently holds the broadcasting rights, while Nine could potentially broadcast one Super Rugby match each week as well as the Wallabies’ matches. Any deal with Nine could also include more extensive rugby coverage via its Stan streaming video service.

CORPORATES
RUGBY AUSTRALIA, FOXTEL MANAGEMENT PTY LTD, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, NINE NETWORK AUSTRALIA LIMITED, STAN ENTERTAINMENT PTY LTD

Foxtel locks in Super Rugby deal

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 3 : 11-Jun-20

Pay-TV group Foxtel will broadcast a scaled-down Super Rugby season after the traditional five-nation competition was cancelled due to the coronavirus. The revised 2020 tournament will comprise five Australian teams, which will play a 10-week round-robin series followed by a two-week finals series. Rugby Australia has yet to secure a broadcasting rights deal beyond 2020.

CORPORATES
FOXTEL MANAGEMENT PTY LTD, RUGBY AUSTRALIA

Fears of low-ball offer for TV rights

Original article by Jamie Pandaram
The Australian – Page: 32 : 6-Mar-20

Rugby Australia will give prospective bidders an additional week to submit offers for its next broadcasting rights deal, after failing to attract any interest. Optus appears set to gain the broadcasting rights after RA’s current broadcast partner Fox Sports declined to sign a non-disclosure agreement. There is speculation that Optus will capitalise on the lack of rival bidders to offer a low price for the rights; RA rejected Fox Sports’ offer of $40m a year in late 2019. Ten Network is tipped to offer about $5m for limited free-to-air coverage of rugby matches.

CORPORATES
SINGTEL OPTUS PTY LTD, RUGBY AUSTRALIA, FOX SPORTS AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, FOXTEL MANAGEMENT PTY LTD, TEN NETWORK HOLDINGS LIMITED

Lions tour for next rugby TV deal scrum

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 29 : 17-Feb-20

Rugby Australia hopes to sign off on a new broadcasting rights deal by the end of April, with Foxtel, Optus and Network Ten understood to have signed non-disclosure agreements for the negotiating process. It is believed that Rugby Australia has secured the 2025 British and Irish Lions tour to help make its five-year rights deal more appealing to broadcasters; it had previously been reported that the deal would not include the tour. Rugby Australia’s new rights deal will include over 400 matches, including New South Wales and Queensland club rights.

CORPORATES
RUGBY AUSTRALIA, FOXTEL MANAGEMENT PTY LTD, SINGTEL OPTUS PTY LTD, TEN NETWORK HOLDINGS LIMITED

Optus in rugby maul as it chases new subscribers

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 24 : 14-Feb-20

Tender documents for Rugby Australia’s new five-year broadcasting rights deal will be sent to prospective bidders within days. Optus CEO Allen Lew says the telco would be interested in buying the rights, which would boost the offering of its sports streaming service. Optus Sports boasts some 825,000 active subscribers, making it the nation’s largest sports-focused streaming service. Foxtel has been Rugby Australia’s broadcast partner for 25 years, and some media reports have suggested that it will not seek to renew the rights.

CORPORATES
SINGTEL OPTUS PTY LTD, OPTUS SPORTS, RUGBY AUSTRALIA, FOXTEL MANAGEMENT PTY LTD

Seven warning as rugby rights deal in balance

Original article by Leo Shanahan
The Australian – Page: 23 : 10-Feb-20

Super Rugby matches are exclusively shown on Foxtel under Rugby Australia’s current broadcasting deal. With Foxtel having chosen not to renew its deal, RA is believed to be want at least one Super Rugby match to be shown on free-to-air TV under its next rights deal. However, factors such as low ratings for rugby matches and a crowded sports schedule may deter interest from commercial networks. Meanwhile, Seven West Media CEO James Warburton says sporting bodies need to deliver "incremental revenue and growth opportunities" for their broadcast partners.

CORPORATES
RUGBY AUSTRALIA, FOXTEL MANAGEMENT PTY LTD, SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, TEN NETWORK HOLDINGS LIMITED, SINGTEL OPTUS PTY LTD

Warning on coverage as Rugby Australia toys with Optus deal

Original article by Lilly Vitorovich, Zoe Samios
The Australian – Page: 15 : 23-Dec-19

Rugby Australia commenced talks with Optus regarding a broadcasting rights deal in November, after rejecting a ‘rollover’ agreement with incumbent broadcaster Foxtel. However, WPP AUNZ director John Steedman warns that a deal with Optus would be ‘disastrous’ for rugby due to the telco’s smaller audience. He also notes that advertisers would prefer a deal with a free-to-air or pay-TV network. Atomic 212 chairman Barry O’Brien agrees that rugby should be on free-to-air or pay-TV.

CORPORATES
RUGBY AUSTRALIA, SINGTEL OPTUS PTY LTD, FOXTEL MANAGEMENT PTY LTD, WPP AUNZ LIMITED – WPP, ATOMIC 212, ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE, SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, NEWS CORP AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, NEWS CORPORATION – ASX NWS

Sorry rugby chiefs pay Folau millions

Original article by Remy Varga
The Australian – Page: 1 & 7 : 5-Dec-19

Rugby Australia has agreed to a confidential settlement with sacked player Israel Folau, who had been seeking $14m in compensation. He is expected to be paid several million dollars to settle the dispute, with Rugby Australia issuing an apology for any hurt or harm caused to Folau and his wife. Folau in turn has used a joint statement to apologise for any hurt or harm his social media comments had caused. The Australian Christian Lobby has advised that people who donated money for Folau’s legal defence will be entitled to a pro-rata refund.

CORPORATES
RUGBY AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN CHRISTIAN LOBBY

Rugby at risk of state breakaway

Original article by Paul Garvey, Steve Jackson
The Australian – Page: 3 : 21-Nov-19

Former media executive David Leckie says Rugby Australia chairman Cameron Clyne should step down immediately rather than waiting until March. He has also called on CEO Raelene Castle to resign, describing her as a "complete disaster". Meanwhile, mining magnate Andrew Forrest says RA’s new leadership team must demonstrate more support for Western Australia, rather than continuing to treat the state as a "poor cousin". He has flagged the possibility of WA fielding its own team at international level.

CORPORATES
RUGBY AUSTRALIA, FORTESCUE METALS GROUP LIMITED – ASX FMG, SEVEN NETWORK LIMITED, NINE NETWORK AUSTRALIA LIMITED, WESTERN FORCE LIMITED, RUGBY WESTERN AUSTRALIA

AFLW inspires more women to play Australian Football

Original article by Roy Morgan
Market Research Update – Page: Online : 25-Mar-19

A Roy Morgan Single Source shows that more than 550,000 Australian women aged 14+ now play one of the four main football codes. Female participation in Australian Football has increased by 21,000 over the last year, to 176,000, while nearly 400,000 women now play Soccer. Meanwhile, 67,000 Australian women now play Rugby League and 32,000 play Rugby Union. The survey also shows that 207,000 women in New South Wales now play football of one sort or another, followed by Victoria with 139,000 and Queensland with 89,000. Roy Morgan CEO Michele Levine says the increasing interest in women’s sport of all types including the football codes provides an increasingly lucrative platform for companies looking to capture a share of this emerging market while it goes through a significant growth phase.

CORPORATES
ROY MORGAN LIMITED