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eir to purchase Setanta Sports Ireland in ground-breaking deal

TV deal will include BT Sport’s Irish broadcasting rights, providing greater content for viewers

eir has acquired international sports broadcaster Setanta Sports Channel Ireland Ltd as the company looks to enhance its offering for eir Vision customers.

The purchase marks further expansion for the broadband, TV mobile and home phone provider, although the exact sum paid will remain undisclosed.

It means eir Vision customers will be able to access an even greater range of sports content, including BT Sport 1, BT Sport 2, BT Sport Europe and BT Sport ESPN – all available via Setanta Sports in Ireland.

Moving into television content ownership

Richard Moat, Eir CEO, described the move as “an extremely exciting and important first step” for the firm in television content ownership.

He said the move is a “game changed for eir” and added that it marks the biggest acquisition made by the provider since the purchase of Meteor back in 2005.

Jon Florsheim, Managing Director of eir Consumer, said the firm is “hugely excited at the possibilities” that come with a move into the content space, which the purchase of Setanta Sports represents.

He added that eir Vision customers will be able to access more high quality live sports programming which he believes will enhance the popularity of the deals of the offer.

Michael O’Rourke, CEO Setanta Sports Ireland, said the deal is significant for Setanta Sports too, as the scale and reach of eir enables the firm to expand the sports programming on offer in Ireland.

“We have worked had to build a business that ensures Irish sports fans can access the widest possible choice of Irish and International sport,” he said.

He thanked investors for their commitment towards the company and explained that further growth is expected in the future.

What’s included with Setanta Sports Ireland

As well as all the BT Sport programming, the new deal will also provide a host of other sports channels for eir Vision customers.

Setanta Sports offers exclusive content in Ireland, including Live Barclays Premier League action and every UEFA Champions League game.

There is also action from the Europa League and FA Cup, exclusive European Rugby Champions League games and every Formula 1 race.

Sports fans can also enjoy English Aviva Premiership Rugby, Allianz Leagues GAA games, The Masters, NHL, NBA, Moto GP and all the biggest hits from the UFC.

The deal needs the approval of the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, as well as from the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources before it can be completed.

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