Nine (ASX:NEC) share price on watch following $650m NRL deal

Rugby player runs with the ball as four tacklers try to stop him.

The Nine Entertainment Co Holdings Ltd (ASX: NEC) share price will be on watch on Tuesday.

This follows the release of a positive update after the market close on Monday.

Why is the Nine share price on watch?

The Nine share price could be given a boost today from news that it has secured the broadcast rights to the NRL for the 2023 to 2027 seasons. This extends its partnership with the league beyond three decades.

According to the release, the agreement will see the live broadcast of NRL matches on Free-To-Air TV remain broadly in line with Nine’s current contract, except for an extra three matches per year. This is due to the expansion of the league to a 17-team competition in 2023.

Nine’s agreement includes the exclusive Free-to-Air broadcast of three premium live games a week, on each of Thursday and Friday evenings and Sunday afternoons, as well as the Finals series, and other special event matches. Nine will also show a Saturday night match live in each of the last five rounds of the weekly competition.

Furthermore, the NRL Grand Final and State of Origin will continue to be exclusively shown on Nine and 9Now. All State of Origin matches will be broadcast on Wednesday evenings from 2023.

Finally, the company has secured the radio and audio streaming rights for at least four matches each week, as well as the finals series and State of Origin series.

What is Nine paying?

The good news for Nine is that there hasn’t been an escalation in prices for these rights.

Nine is paying an average of ~$115 million per annum, which is in line with the price it paid for the 2018 to 2022 contract. The only difference this time is the additional ~$15 million per annum of contra and other non-cash services that will be provided. This is up from ~$10 million per annum previously.

Nine’s Chairman, Peter Costello, said: “This is a major deal for our business to bring this exciting sport to the Australian public across our platforms. The negotiation has been constructive and in the spirit of partnership across our businesses and we thank the NRL for the positive engagement in the process for an outcome that benefits all Australians and fans of the game.”

This sentiment was echoed by Nine’s CEO, Mike Sneesby.

He commented: “We are very pleased to extend our 30-year partnership with the NRL for a further five years. This certainty enables Nine to continue to bring the game live and free to all Australians, and partner with the NRL to further develop the game for the clubs and the broader community. This is an outstanding result as together we build a strong media partnership delivering quality, and free, NRL coverage for all Australians for the next six years.”

The post Nine (ASX:NEC) share price on watch following $650m NRL deal appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia’s parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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