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Arena expands EHF coverage in Infront/DAZN deal

Andreas Nilsson of Telekom Veszprem HC in action during the EHF Champions League match between Sporting CP and Veszprem HC. (Photo by Gualter Fatia/Getty Images)

Pay-television broadcaster Arena Sport has acquired European Handball Federation club and national team events across the Balkan region in a new four-year deal.

The new deal is for rights in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia and Slovenia and includes. It includes all matches from the EHF men’s and women’s club competitions (EHF Champions League, European Handball League and the EHF Cup), from 2020-21 to 2023-24, and all qualifiers and matches from the 2022 and 2024 men’s and women’s European championships, and the men’s and women’s Beach Handball Euro 2021 and 2023.

Arena currently has no presence in Slovenia. In most cases Arena sublicenses its pan-regional Balkan rights in Slovenia to sports channel Šport TV.

The deal was agreed with the joint venture of the Infront agency and DAZN Group. The pair signed a 10-season deal with the EHF to sell global rights, from 2020-21 to 2029-30.

Arena currently hold rights to EHF Champions League across several of the territories included in the new deal, in a four-season deal, from 2016-17 to 2019-20. Markets included Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, North Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia. That deal was agreed by the MP & Silva agency, however since its collapsed, would have reverted to the marketing arm of the federation, EHF Marketing.

The pay-television broadcaster also holds rights to the International Handball Federation events, in a seven-year deal with the Lagardère agency, from 2019 to 2025. Lagardère acquired global rights to the IHF last year after the federation cancelled its original agreement with MP & Silva.

EHF men’s and women’s 2020 European Championship rights, including qualifying, was acquired by the Playbook International agency in Bosnia, Croatia, Kosovo, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia and Slovenia.