The Supreme Court rules in favour of Mediapro and puts an end to the “football war”

9 February 2015

The Court considered that the Agreement between the companies contained a clause which contravened article 1 of the Unfair Competition Act (LDC) and article 1 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFUE). Since this clause is related to the purpose of the agreement, the superior court considered that its nullity rendered the entire agreement invalid.

The purpose of the agreement was to continue the model of exploitation of the broadcasting rights of the different football clubs that participated in the Spanish League and King’s Cup competitions. According to the decision, the purpose of the agreement was to end competition between AVS and Mediapro to obtain broadcasting rights from the clubs, to avoid such rights becoming more expensive and to share their exploitation between themselves. In this regard, the Court held that “(…) it must be appreciated that the agreement as a whole aimed to restrict competition, and all its clauses were related based on the aim pursued.”

On another note, the court concluded that, although the nullity rendered invalid the entire agreement because it affected the “structural element of the business”, an effective legal relationship also existed between the parties, since there was a reciprocal exchange of rights in the 2006-2007 season. During that term, Mediapro handed over the rights that it owned for the purchase price and, at the same time, AVS transferred to it the right to commercialize certain matches stipulated in the contract. For this reason, the Court considered that Mediapro should pay AVS the amount of 32,331,350.71 € for the re-broadcasting rights sub-license corresponding to the 2006-2007 season.

 

The decision can be read at: www.ecestaticos.com

For further information please contact Eric Jordi