Saturday 21 September 2019

Naughten seeks advice on RTE's GAA venture

Communications Minister Denis Naughten. Photo: Tom Burke
Communications Minister Denis Naughten. Photo: Tom Burke
Samantha McCaughren

Samantha McCaughren

Minister for Communications Denis Naughten has sought advice from the broadcasting regulator over a plan by RTE to form a joint venture with the GAA for the online streaming of Gaelic games.

The service, known as GAAGO, launched in 2014 and proved very successful, delivering profits for both partners. In June, RTE and the GAA moved to formalise the arrangement by forming a joint venture.

Under the terms of the agreement, the GAA will grant GAAGO international rights to matches organised by the GAA on a long-term basis. RTE's commercial operation will provide the technical, operational and marketing capabilities for a high-quality subscription service. It will be owned equally by the partners.

The arrangement has already been approved by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission.

The board of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) considered the issue at its monthly meeting last Friday.

Naughten is seeking advice from the BAI under the 2009 Broadcasting Act which requires the consent of the minister for RTE to "promote or take part in the formation or establishment of a company, and enter into joint ventures or partnerships".

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