Ofcom is to look again at the supply of Sky Sports to other pay-TV providers. The regulator says there have been a number of sector developments since the Wholesale Must Offer was first introduced following the 2010 review of the pay-TV market.
Following the review Sky was ordered to make Sky Sports 1 and Sky Sports 2 available to all comers at a pre-determined wholesale rate. The pay-TV provider also runs, Sky Sports 3, Sky Sports 4, Sky Sports News and Sky Sports F1, which are not a part of the order.
Since the original order was made, ESPN has pulled out of the European market, its place as the alternative pay-TV sports provider taken by BT Sport. The telco has already paid £738m for Premier League rights and will have exclusivity on the European club football from 2015 through an exclusive £897m three-year deal to broadcast live Champions League and Europa League football matches.
The ruling has seen the involvement of the Competition Appeal Tribunal, and the Court of Appeal, with even Ofcom’s jurisdiction over the matter called into question.
Separately, Ofcom is considering a complaint from BT under the Competition Act 1998 which alleges that Sky has abused a dominant position in relation to negotiations over the supply of Sky Sports 1 and 2 for BT’s YouView platform.