BARCELONA (Reuters) - Britain’s dominant pay-TV group BSkyB expects to see a short-term impact on its margins from the higher than expected cost to buy Premier League soccer rights, its finance officer said.
Andrew Griffith told a conference organized by Morgan Stanley that there would be a “little bit of discontinuity” to its steady improvement in margins but said it expected to recover over time.
”Clearly there is a little bit of discontinuity with the Premier League,“ he said. ”There’s a step uplift next year and then it’s flat amortizing for the next few years.
“So I would say don’t look at the gross margin or even the EBIT margin too much on a linear year basis, but let’s try and look at that over the medium term.”
BSkyB and new market entrant BT agreed in June a 3 billion pounds ($4.75 billion) rights deal to show live English Premier League matches for the next three years.
BSkyB will pay 760 million pounds per season to show 116 live games - a 40 percent increase on the cost of its current deal.
($1=0.6310 British pounds)
Reporting by Kate Holton and Paul Sandle; Editing by Mike Nesbit