DirecTV and NFL ink Sunday Ticket deal: 8 years at $1.5B per year

DirecTV (NASDAQ: DTV) has finally signed a deal with the National Football League that will keep the premium football game package NFL Sunday Ticket on the satellite operator's service through 2022.

Terms of the deal weren't disclosed, but according to Reuters, the eight-year exclusive contract is valued at around $12 billion. Averaging about $1.5 billion a year, the deal represents a significant bump over the current contract, which calls for DirecTV to pay $1 billion per season. The current deal expires at the end of the 2014-15 NFL season.

Sunday Ticket is currently subscribed to by about 2 million of DirecTV's 20 million U.S. subscribers. That base, however, could grow significantly if the Federal Communications Commission approves the purchase of DirecTV by AT&T (NYSE: T), which not only would add about 6 million U-verse pay-TV subscribers, but access to around 100 million mobile device customers, as well.

"This new agreement is a testament to the terrific long-term relationship we have with the NFL and its millions of fans across the country," said Mike White, chairman, president and CEO of DirecTV. "NFL Sunday Ticket has always been the centerpiece of DirecTV's sports leadership and we're pleased to continue our relationship with the NFL and be a part of the league's future growth and success."

"We are pleased to continue our partnership with DirecTV," said NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. "DirecTV and NFL Sunday Ticket have served our fans well for 20 years and continue to complement our broadcast television packages. We also appreciate DirecTV's commitment to NFL Network, which it has carried since the channel launched in 2003."

For more:
- read this Reuters story
- read this NFL.com story

Related links:
FCC gets out of the NFL blackout business
DirecTV reaches deal with Dispatch Video, pleads to Raycom: 'Let the people see pro football
NFL creates sites to rally support around blackout rule
DirecTV to pay around $1.4B to renew NFL Sunday Ticket, report says

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