Copa del Rey and Supercopa de España

Spain: Changes requested to proposal that would allow sportsbooks to broadcast soccer matches

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Spain's National Commission for Markets and Competition (CNMC) said that the proposal submitted by the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) to offer the streaming rights of the Copa del Rey and Supercopa de España soccer matches to sportsbooks does not comply with legally established requirements.

In the report prepared on the case, the CNMC also requested the RFEF to make changes to its proposal "for the commercialization of streaming rights for live betting for 2022/23, 2023/24, 2024/25, 2025/26 and 2026/27 seasons."

The document stated that "having seen the Marketing Proposal document submitted by the RFEF, the CNMC concludes that it does not comply with the requirements established in Royal Decree-Law 5/2015," on urgent measures in relation to the commercialization of the exploitation rights of audiovisual content of professional soccer competitions.

In line with this, the commission argued that "in order to adapt the commercialization proposal submitted to the regulation and to the principles of the CNMC, the RFEF should clarify the perimeter of the rights included and adapt them in a compliant manner to what is considered in the Royal Decree-Law."

"Specifically, the content of the lot or lots and how they will be assigned, if applicable, should be clarified," the CNMC said. In other words, "clarify whether the rights are tendered in three lots (Spain, United States, and Canada and the rest of the world) or in a single lot."

Officials also requested the reform of "those aspects pointed out in the report that are contrary to the principles of publicity, transparency, competitiveness, and non-discrimination in the process of awarding the rights, particularly by providing certainty on the procedure and eliminating discretion in the adjudication decisions."

In this regard, they specified that the RFEF should "grant sufficient time periods for the preparation and submission of bids and the request for clarifications," as well as "eliminate the formulations that generate uncertainty for the candidates and grant excessive discretion to the RFEF in the adjudication of the rights."

Finally, the CNMC urged the sports federation to "consider a maximum bidding period of 3 seasons," instead of the five that they seek to commercialize according to the proposal submitted.

Click here to access the CNMC report on the RFEF's proposal to commercialize broadcasting rights to sportsbooks.