Globo suspends Paulista rights payments
TV Globo, the Brazilian commercial broadcaster, has suspended payments to the FPF, the state governing body of soccer in Sao Paulo, amid the suspension of its Campeonato Paulista league due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
TV Globo has a six-year contract with the FPF, running from 2016 to 2021, which includes free-to-air, pay-television and internet rights to the annual state tournament.
The broadcaster was due to pay its latest instalment on 5 April, but this will not be forthcoming because of the suspension of the competition.
In a letter sent to the FPF, seen by the Brazilian website UOL, Globo stated said: “In view of the suspension of the 2020 Campeonato Paulista, for an indefinite period, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we inform that as a precautionary measure we are suspending the payment of the last instalment referring to the Campeonato, scheduled for 05/04/2020, in accordance with the clauses of contracts, while the current uncertainty regarding the impacts of the pandemic on the full or effective continuation of the Campeonato endures.”
The FPF and its 48 member clubs elected to suspend all competitions indefinitely at a meeting on 16 March.
Globo’s decision comes a day after pay-television broadcaster BeIN Sports wrote to the LFP, the French professional league, to announce it was suspending its scheduled payment for top-tier Ligue 1 and second-tier Ligue 2 rights, to the tune of €42 million ($46 million), until the competitions resume.
Vivendi-owned Canal Plus also announced a similar decision over its €110 million payment due later this week.
BeIN and Canal Plus hold Ligue 1 rights until the end of this season in a deal worth €726.5 million per season. The final payment from the pair is due on 5 June.
These are among the latest instances of broadcasters refusing to make rights payments over the suspension of live sports, which has left them struggling to fill their schedules.
Nordic Entertainment Group, the regional media giant, was one of the first such companies to declare it would not be paying any rights fees for postponed properties until they resume.
DAZN, the international subscription streaming platform, informed rights-holders this week that it will not be making its next rights payments for any content that has not been delivered.