Thursday, July 2, 2020

France Télévisions will share the broadcast of Roland Garros with Amazon

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Roland-Garros TV rights for the period 2021-2023 were awarded to France Télévisions, with the exception of the evening games and those scheduled on court Simonne-Mathieu, awarded to Amazon.

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Cameras around the court no 7 of Roland-Garros, in 2011. JACQUES DEMARTHON / AFP

The rights of Roland-Garros television for the period 2021-2023 were awarded to France Télévisions, announced Thursday, July 25 the French Tennis Federation (FFT). With one exception, and not least: evening games, and those scheduled on the short Simonne-Mathieu, were sold to Amazon.

No amount has been disclosed but the FFT specifies that the revenues received "Will increase by more than 25%". So far, the retransmission agreement shared between France Télévisions and Eurosport, which runs until 2020, brought in 24 million euros per year to the FFT. For example, two other Grand Slam tournaments, Wimbledon and the US Open, generate nearly 70 million euros per year in TV rights.

The big news is therefore the arrival of a brand new broadcaster for the Paris tournament with Amazon and its streaming platform that will broadcast for the first time a French sports competition.

The best games on Amazon?

And if the wording of the announcement suggests that France Televisions keeps the hand, with the first batch won, the reality seems a little more nuanced, since the night sessions, the first to be held Porte d'Auteuil thanks to the retractable roof of the central court, will be exclusive from 2021, with the exception of semi-finals and finals, on Amazon. We can already imagine the puzzle for the organizers, who will have to avoid all the best posters of the day ending up on the streaming platform, and escape the public service.

The American giant is not his first shot in tennis: he is already present in Britain, where he will also broadcast from 2020 part of the men's and women's circuit, including the US Open, the one of four Grand Slam tournaments.

After launching its tender on 13 June, the first proposals did not reach the reserve price set by the FFT, which decided on 19 July to open a negotiation period. This tender was badly spent on the side of the historical broadcaster. The president of France Télévisions, Delphine Ernotte, had declared herself, in an interview with World, "Shocked" by the attitude of the FFT, accused of wanting to push up the bill by courting including GAFA. "It's a very cavalier way to treat a thirty-year-old partner"she had estimated. Delphine Ernotte said Thursday "Very happy to see this beautiful event that is Roland-Garros remain in the fold of the public service".

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