Manchester United buys out BSkyB stake to take complete control of its TV channel
MUMBAI: Manchester United has taken complete ownership of its in-house television channel Manchester United Television (MUTV) by acquiring the one-third minority equity stake held by BskyB (Sky).
MUTV is now a wholly owned group subsidiary.
As part of the club‘s long-term digital media plans, Manchester United has made the strategic acquisition of Sky’s stake in MUTV in order to own 100 per cent of the content production and distribution capabilities of this business.
MUTV was launched in 1998 as a three-way joint venture, with UK broadcasters ITV and Sky as equal partners. Since then, MUTV has developed considerable in-house expertise and Manchester United bought ITV’s one-third equity stake in November 2007.
According to the club, the latest acquisition is a natural progression and is indicative of the club’s desire to have full control of the content generating and distribution capabilities across all of its businesses.
MUTV is available in 57 countries around the world. It is accessed in the UK and Ireland by subscription on satellite and cable platforms, and in the rest of the world through a combination of subscription or as programming blocks purchased by international broadcasters.
Manchester United commercial director Richard Arnold said: "The acquisition of Sky’s stake is great news for all our fans who watch us around the globe, MUTV, its staff and the club. We look forward to continuing to enhance our media proposition and distribution capabilities in the years to come, and delivering some of the best and most compelling content to our 659 million followers.