British Telecom to buy ESPN UK and Ireland channels

  • British Telecom agreed on Monday to buy ESPN's UK and Ireland TV channels as it adds to its live sports coverage.

    The deal sees BT acquire the ESPN and ESPN America channels and their live rights to show FA Cup, Scottish Premier League, UEFA Europa League, and German Bundesliga matches in the UK.

    BT had already secured the rights to show live English Premier League games for the first time, from next season.

    The transaction is expected to be completed at the end of July.

    "We are delighted to have reached agreement with ESPN for the acquisition of their UK channels business and that we have been able to add some exciting new sports rights to the ones we already have," said Marc Watson, chief executive of television, BT Retail.

    The deal will also see BT continue to show the U.S. sports currently shown on ESPN America, including college basketball, college football and Nascar racing.