Munich, 8 January 2001. The KirchGruppe has reached agreement with ARD and ZDF on a contract for live coverage of the 2002 World Cup. The contract still requires board approval from the federal state broadcasting authorities and ZDF. It provides for a package of 24 live matches, including all games played by the German national team, the opening game, the semi-finals and the final. The play-off for third place will also be broadcast if the German team is involved. ARD and ZDF will be entitled to select the most important game of the day.

ARD and ZDF are partially financing their acquisition of the rights to the 2002 World Cup by licensing the pay-TV rights for the 2002 until 2008 Olympics to the KirchGruppe. This will not affect transmission of the Olympics on free-TV by ARD and ZDF.

Dieter Hahn, Deputy Chairman of the KirchHolding executive board comments: ‘This deal will be of great future relevance for awarding the rights to the 2006 World Cup since ARD and ZDF are our preferred partners for live free-TV coverage. The agreement shows that co-operation between public and commercial operators is in the generally understood interest of all those concerned and that more recent forms of transmission, such as pay-TV, do not inevitably lead to the suppression of established free-TV stations.’

The contract provides ARD and ZDF with a timeframe for acquiring the rights to the 2006 World Cup within which they may exercise an exclusive purchase option.

For further questions kindly contact:

KirchMedia GmbH & Co. KGaA
Hartmut Schultz
Corporate Communications
Tel: + 49 89/9956 2325