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French Soccer Media Rights Valued At Up to $14B

  • Private equity firms are bidding on media rights for Ligue 1 and Ligue 2.
  • Bids value the rights up to $14 billion.
Ligue-1-Mbappe
Ligue 1/Design: Alex Brooks

France’s top soccer organization is moving closer to following in the footsteps of La Liga and selling a stake in its media rights.

Ligue de Football Professionnel, which oversees Ligue 1 and Ligue 2, has received around 10 bids to purchase 10% to 15% of a new company that will hold the league’s media assets.

Proposals have valued the league at $10.2 billion to $14.1 billion. Some top out around $1.7 billion for the bidding firm’s stake. 

  • French private equity firms including Ardian and BPI made offers, as did American firms CVC, Advent, and Bain Capital.
  • Apollo, Bridgepoint, EQT, KKR, and Silver Lake were reportedly interested in bidding as well, though it’s unclear if they did.
  • Ligue 1 could award the entire stake to one firm or divide it among multiple bidders.

Rewards for Top Teams

While things quickly turned acrimonious between La Liga and three of its top teams over the sale of its media rights stake to CVC Capital Partners, Ligue 1 may structure the deal to gain their top clubs’ support.

The deal could lead to more funds directed to Paris Saint-Germain and Olympique Marseilles, Ligue 1’s two most popular teams, which each earn under 10% of the league’s media revenue.

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