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BSkyB keeps Premier League rights

Chelsea v Man Utd
Premier League football is one of BSkyB's key subscription drivers

BSkyB has retained its share of live Premier League broadcast rights in the UK for 2010 to 2013.

The Premier League announced on Tuesday that the subscription-only broadcaster had been awarded four of the six packages of audio-visual rights.

That is the same number BSkyB has held since 2006. The remaining two packages will go to a second round of bidding.

Last week, the BBC retained the rights to broadcast Premier League highlights up to the end of the 2012-13 season.

All interested parties had to hand in their bids for the live rights on Tuesday, with BSkyB's main rivals widely reported to be Setanta and US sports network ESPN.

However, the identities of other companies involved in the bidding process have not been revealed by the Premier League.

The two packages in the current deal not owned by BSkyB belong to Ireland-based Setanta.

BSkyB has the right to bid for one of the two outstanding packages in the new deal.

The Premier League insists it will not comment on the size of BSkyB's successful bid or any other aspect of the tendering process until after the second round of offers.

BSkyB, part of Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation media empire, paid a reported 1.3bn to show four packages of 23 games each for three seasons when the rights were last on offer.

Setanta, meanwhile, spent 392m on two bundles of 26 matches - handing the Premier League a total income of very nearly 1.7bn for live domestic rights over those three years.

The overseas broadcast rights, which are also up for renewal in 2010, generated a total of 625m over the same three-year period when they were renegotiated in January 2007.

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see also
BBC retains Premier League rights
28 Jan 09 |  Premier League
BSkyB upbeat despite profit fall
31 Jul 08 |  Business
Premier League pirates targeted
21 Apr 08 |  Beds/Bucks/Herts
BSkyB wins Champions League deal
18 Mar 08 |  Business
ESPN 'eyes Premier League rights'
10 Dec 07 |  Business
Premiership in new 625m TV deal
18 Jan 07 |  Business
Football rights hat-trick for Sky
28 Apr 06 |  Business

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