BT Boss Criticises Rights Inflation

March 3, 2017

The Chief Executive of telecommunications company BT has hit out at inflation in television rights deals.

Gavin Patterson’s comments come as the telco giants’ pay-TV service BT Sport attempts to re-secure UK rights to major football competition.

With the first round of bidding to secure rights for the UEFA Champions League and Europa League taking place earlier this week, BT Sport are hoping to renew their exclusive deal that currently expires in 2018.

The telecommunications company paid €1.075bn for a three-season exclusive UK rights deal which began in 2015, but it is expected that the cost will rise at least 30% for the next set of rights.

This has angered BT boss Patterson, who said the “rampant inflation in sports rights has to end”.

He has also indicated that the company are not necessarily seeking to secure an exclusive rights deal, stating, “We don’t have to be number one in the sports market, but we do have to be a viable number two.”