Eutelsat nets Arena Bundesliga deal

Arena Sport Rechte und Marketing GmbH and Eutelsat visAvision GmbH, the German subsidiary of satellite operator Eutelsat Communications have agreed a three-year deal to bring all matches of the Fussball-Bundesliga (German Soccer League) live to cable network operators in Germany. The agreement opens the opportunity for Arena to reach cable homes served by network operators who are already partners of Eutelsat's Kabelkiosk digital programme and service platform which offers 50 German and foreign-language channels.

More than 100 small to medium-sized cable networks in Germany who are partners of the Kabelkiosk, serving two million households, will now be able to offer live access to all 612 matches of the next season of the national Fussball-Bundesliga from August. 2006. In addition to the Bundesliga package, homes will be able to subscribe to an additional offer of nine entertainment channels in a package called TIVIDI. Eutelsat visAvision's objective is to add further German-language entertainment channels in the TIVIDI package in order to take the offer to 20 channels. The Bundesliga and TIVIDI packages will be delivered through Eutelsat from its 8° West location which already delivers the Kabelkiosk service.

"We are pleased, that with this partnership with Eutelsat visAvision we are in a position to serve the high demand from independent cable network operators and access additional cable customers," said Christoph Bellmer, Managing Director Technical and Sales of Arena.

"Today's agreement is an important milestone for Eutelsat visAvision and our KabelKiosk product in Germany. By leveraging its existing business model, which allows cable operators to retain their end-customer relationships, Eutelsat visAvision can now serve compelling Arena programming to its cable partners," stressed Volker Steiner, Managing Director of Eutelsat visAvision.

"We are very pleased that Eutelsat's German subsidiary has won the confidence of Arena to offer live German Soccer League matches to German cable homes from our 8 degrees West position," said Giuliano Berretta, Eutelsat CEO. "This new contract is fully in line with our strategy to develop new premium video neighbourhoods, including at 7/8 degrees West, in addition to our existing premium Hot Bird and Eurobird 1 neighbourhoods."