Disney Has No Plans To Buy Setanta....Yet

Thursday, June 11, 2009

So the big story across the pond, is the fact that Irish cable channel Setanta Sports is in danger of going bankrupt. The rumor was that ESPN/Disney was interested in buying the channel, but according to Reuters, that's not the case. As of yet....

ESPN, the Walt Disney-owned sports network, has no current plans to buy the stricken Irish broadcaster Setanta, it said on Thursday, after days of speculation that it could make a bid.

The board of Setanta has spent the week in emergency refinancing talks to try to prevent the group from falling into administration. It has suspended signing up new customers and has said it is fighting to secure the business.

ESPN had been seen as a potential buyer.

"We currently have no plans to buy Setanta," a spokesman said, in response to the speculation. "There are a lot of stories out there that link ESPN with a possible purchase. We wanted to set the record straight."
The biggest rub in all of this, is the fact that ESPN was outbid by Setanta Sports for International EPL rights. If ESPN doesn't buy Setanta, and the channel doesn't get refinancing, the channel's rights could go back on the market. It's a tough spot for ESPN to be in, but at least there's a chance for them to secure the rights they got outbid on a few months ago.

Disney's ESPN: no current plan to buy Setanta (Reuters)

Posted by Awful Announcing at 11:13 AM


I am sorry to hear this. I have Setanta on Directv and their coverage of La Liga and other European soccer is top notch.

It is good to have independent stations and I hope another little guy is not gobbled up by the ESPN conglomerate. The ESPN "touch" is quite different than the Setanta style.

Unknown said...
Jun 11, 2009, 4:11:00 PM  

Little guy? I don't think you outbid ESPN if you are a "little guy."

JFreak said...
Jun 11, 2009, 8:17:00 PM  

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