BBC Renews Rights to Wimbledon Coverage Until 2017

October 27, 2011

The British Broadcast Corporation (BBC) have retained the rights to broadcast Tennis’s Grand Slam tournament, Wimbledon, until 2017.

BBC Sport has agreed a three-year extension to its current contract as host broadcaster and UK rights holder, extending its relationship with the All England Lawn Tennis Club to 90 years.

The new deal, which reaffirms the BBC’s long term commitment to delivering the best sporting events to licence fee payers, will continue to give audiences unprecedented access to the tournament across all platforms including TV, radio, online, red button, mobile and tablet.

Ian Ritchie, chief executive of the All England Club, said: “Wimbledon fans have been enjoying the BBC’s broadcast coverage of The Championships since 1927 and we are delighted to be extending this enduring and successful partnership for a further three years.”

Barbara Slater, director of BBC Sport, added: “The BBC’s first-ever live sport broadcast was from Wimbledon and we are proud that our new deal means the longest partnership in sports broadcasting continues.

“We know that Wimbledon fortnight has a very special place in the hearts of the UK public. We are delighted that our new agreement ensures coverage of The Championships remains free to air and available to licence fee payers.”

The has been a turbulent year for the BBC financially who had to reduce their deal over Formula One coverage.

From next year, Sky Sports will screen all practice, qualifying and grands prix live, while the BBC will now show 50 per cent of the races, with the remainder aired via a deferred highlights package.

The BBC made no secret of the fact that the deal was struck to save money on the remaining two seasons of its £40 million ($64.2m) per-year contract with Bernie Ecclestone’s Formula One Management.