The clubs have agreed a new improved deal which will run from season 2012-13 to the end of season 2016-17. ESPN and Sky will broadcast 30 live SPL league games per season each.
SPL Chief Executive Neil Doncaster, said: “Sky Sports and ESPN are two of the biggest names in sports broadcasting and the SPL has enjoyed an excellent relationship with both broadcasters over the course of the current contract, a period which has seen a 28% increase in viewing figures. In the current economic climate, announcing an increase in value is excellent news for our clubs.”
The deal is worth around £80 million over five seasons – a 24% increase on the previous deal – which saw the league receive £65 million over five seasons previously, following the league’s previous agreement with Setanta, which ended due to the collapse of the Irish company in 2009.
Doncaster added: “We are very much looking forward to working with both broadcasters over the coming seasons to continue to raise the profile of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League and provide fans with excellent coverage of their league.”
Sky Sports Managing Director Barney Francis, commented: “We’re delighted to agree this deal with the SPL and continue our partnership with Scottish football that began 20 years ago. This long-term agreement means Sky Sports viewers can continue to enjoy coverage of 30 live matches a season, including each Old Firm head-to-head, across TV, mobile, online and tablet devices.”
Ross Hair, ESPN Managing Director, added: “The Clydesdale Bank Premier League has been an important part of our schedule in these first two-and-a-half seasons of our local ESPN channel in the UK and Ireland.
“Scottish football has performed well on ESPN as we work to build our brand locally and develop our long-term business. We are very proud of the coverage that we have delivered to fans and are very pleased that they have responded with great support and an increasing connection to ESPN on TV and across digital media. We are very excited to continue our coverage and pleased to extend a great partnership with the league.”