New SANZAR TV deal confirmed
December 22, 2004

Rugby in New Zealand South Africa and Australia is set for a massive windfall after a new five year broadcasting rights deal worth $323million was struck between SANZAR and News Limited.

"This is a superb result for rugby as it allows us to plan the future with certainty and confidence," SANZAR and New Zealand Rugby Union (NZRU) chief executive Chris Moller said in a statement.
The new agreement covers broadcast rights for the three SANZAR countries and the United Kingdom, with News Limited acquiring the rights for New Zealand, Australia and Britain and Supersport securing the rights for Africa.
It does not include the broadcast market in France or other markets in Asia, the Americas or the rest of Europe. SANZAR estimates additional rights could be worth $20-30 million, raising the value of the entire package to around $350 million.
"This agreement secures the future of Rugby in Australia, both at an elite level and a grassroots level," Australian Rugby boss Gary Flowers said. "It allows us to expand the Super 12 from 69 matches to 94 Super 14 matches from 2006 onwards. It allows us to expand the Tri Nations series from six Test matches to nine Test matches and importantly, it will enable us to fund the continued growth of the game at the grassroots level," Flowers said.

"This broadcast agreement is a vote of confidence in the game's future and contradicts the predictions of many commentators who said SANZAR would not receive as much for these rights as we did in the original agreement," South African Rugby chief executive Johan Prinsloo said.
"We are delighted that our tremendously successful partnership with rugby union will continue for the next five years," News Ltd chief executive John Hartigan said. "The new broadcast deal will cement these benefits and give fans an even better programme of regional, provincial and international rugby over the next five years."

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