MILAN, July 29 (Class Editori) -- The plan for a Lega Serie A channel of the President of Naples football team, Aurelio De Laurentiis, (revealed by Milano-Finanza in newsstand) finds two potential industrial and financial partners: Wanda and Mediapro. Yesterday, the time limit to submit the binding offers for the TV rights of the most important Italian football championship expired. Eight offers reached the table of President Dal Pino. The private equities CVC, Bain and Advent aim at detecting 15% of the media company- as expected- to which the rights of the following 10 seasons will merge. The Newco should have a shared management between Lega and funds but separated from the Assembly of the Presidents and it should be evaluated between 11 and 15 billion.
Both the governance model and the Media Company evaluation would not persuade different presidents. However, as previously reported by this newspaper, Lega has also received offers by debt funds GSO (Blackstone), Apollo and Fortress, ready to finance the Media Company or the Lega Channel by remaining outside from capital and management. These funds might also ensure an annual minimum revenue to clubs, which, according to leaks, will account for 1.6 billion media for nine seasons, as for Fortress. In the end, in order to create the Lega channel, the industrial partnership proposals by Wanda and surprisingly by Mediapro, which had already presented a similar project for the 2018 announcement of selection, have directly reached the clubs.
According to Milano Finanza's knowledge, both offers would ensure a minimum of annual revenues to the clubs of the most important Italian championship. As for Wanda, the amount would be worth between €1.2 and 1.35 billion per year, according to the commitment requested to the company to creating contents for nine seasons. The revenues exceeding this threshold would be distributed between Wanda and Lega, according to variable rates. Moreover, the group would be ready to pay a deposit on the occasion of the signature, with the aim of enriching some clubs, which have been affected by the pandemic. The proposal by Mediapro is similar; however, it considers a timespan of six seasons and provides for a minimum of annual revenues worth 1.4 billion for the first three-year period and 1.45 billion for the second one. Beyond this threshold, a new sharing mechanism of the revenues between club and industrial partner would be triggered.
The eight companies are now separated, but it cannot be excluded that consortia could be created, perhaps among industrial partners of the thematic channel and debit funds, as for the minimum payment ensured to clubs. Next Thursday, however, a Lega assembly is scheduled, in order to study the offers and probably draft a short-list. Many are expecting that, due to the quantity, the quality of the proposals received and the scope of the deal, the decision will take time and it will not be taken (in the best case) before September.
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