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Disney, Apple and Amazon keep waiting as NFL considers Sunday Ticket offers

6/25/2022 1:06:10 PM
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Disney, Apple and Amazon have all submitted bids to become the new broadcast rights owner of the National Football League’s out-of-market Sunday Ticket package. They’re just waiting to find out who wins, Alex Sherman of CNBC reports.

The three companies submitted bids weeks ago, according to people familiar with the matter. The NFL continues to be in discussion with all three bidders as it decides which partner it will choose, said the people, who asked not to be named because the negotiations are private.

The NFL wants any buyer to pay more than $2 billion for the rights and a stake in NFL Media, which is being packaged with Sunday Ticket, three of the people said. The NFL’s mobile rights could be part of the package, as well, since its previous mobile agreement with Verizon has ended.

DirecTV paid $1.5 billion per year for Sunday Ticket for the existing rights, which end after the upcoming 2022-23 season. The NFL pushed for 100% increases for its primary game packages last year, but there’s little chance the league will get $3 billion for Sunday Ticket, which has historically lost money for DirecTV, sources said.

Many observers, including some of the bidders themselves, have expressed surprise a deal hasn’t gotten done by now. The delay has to do with the mix of assets and associated partnership conversations wrapped up in the deal talks, two of the people said. If the discussions centered on Sunday Ticket only, an agreement probably would have already been reached, one of the people said.

There’s no urgency on an announcement, as DirecTV already will offer Sunday Ticket for the coming season. Bidders would like to get a deal done sooner rather than later because they want enough time to alert consumers that the owner of Sunday Ticket rights will change.

Spokespeople for Amazon, Apple, Disney and the NFL declined to comment.

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