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Bwin secures Pro League betting streaming rights in wider sponsorship tie-up

Belgian Pro League CEO Pierre Francois at press conference on July 31, 2020 (Photo by LAURIE DIEFFEMBACQ/Belga/AFP via Getty Images)

Online betting operator Bwin has secured betting streaming rights in Belgium to the country’s top-tier Jupiler Pro League as part of a wider sponsorship agreement.

The Austria-based operator has been named as the new betting partner of both the Pro League and Eleven Sports, the subscription broadcaster that holds the broadcast rights to the Belgian top flight.

The deal will run from 2020-21 to 2022-23 and involves advertising on all of Pro League and Eleven Sports’ platforms. Bwin also becomes the betting sponsor of the second-tier First Division B and the Belgian Supercup.

Customers of Bwin will be able to watch the Pro League matches by using the betting operator’s ‘Bet and Watch’ service.

The award of betting streaming rights to Bwin follows on from Eleven’s sublicensing of Pro League highlights rights to Belgian French-language public-service broadcaster RTBF in a five-season agreement.

The two deals have been signed ahead of the start of the 2020-21 season this weekend.

Eleven, which will pay €103m ($120.9m) per season during the 2020-25 cycle for its exclusive global rights to Belgian football, will launch three dedicated Belgian football channels this week.

In announcing the agreement today, Bwin, Pro League and the newly-rebranded Eleven Sports said that they have committed to a shared vision on the responsible use of betting services.

Steven Cartigny, commercial head of Bwin in the Benelux countries and rest of the world, said that the operator wants to build a strong presence in Belgium, following on from its involvement with the German Football Association (DFB) and the third-tier 3. Liga. He said: “As a result of this positive experience, we now continue to focus on Belgian football. Belgium is a breeding ground for talented football players, who are doing a great job worldwide. That’s why all eyes are increasingly focused on our national Jupiler Pro League.”

Pierre François (pictured), chief executive of the Pro League, said: “Games of chance and betting can add an extra dimension to the football experience. However, each partner is aware of the risks of irresponsible behaviour. That’s why we are all committed to minimising the risks, each in his own role.”

Guillaume Collard, managing director of Eleven Sports Belgium and Luxemburg, added that the broadcaster is looking forward to working with Bwin to champion its offering “in a way that promotes responsible entertainment to fans”.

Eleven Sports’ rights inventory comprises domestic and international rights to the top two Belgian divisions as well as the Belgian Cup, the Belgian Super Cup, the women’s Super League and the E-Pro League. The broadcaster has agreed distribution deals for the channels with telcos Proximus and Orange.