PRO14 closes income gap on Premiership
The clubs competing in the Guinness PRO14 will share around €29m in television revenue next season after confirming that eir Sport will show their games in Ireland.
A combination of that deal, the one signed with Premier Sports in the United Kingdom, and the existing partnerships in Italy and South Africa brings the tournament closer to the English Premiership, with the French Top 14 still well out in front with its bumper €97m deal with BeIn Sports.
Eir will show all 152 games next season, while they will sub-licence out a number of fixtures to TG4.
"We feel like we started from quite a low point and we need to try and bridge that gap to allow our teams to be competitive in Europe and ultimately to keep players in the country, so the tournament is successful," managing director Martin Anayi said at the launch of eir's coverage yesterday.
"This year, especially with the deals that we have done... through that revenue we have got much, much closer to the English.
"On top of the money that comes in from the European competition, we are pretty close now. That was the aim."
Anayi said the PRO14 hope to arrange an airline sponsorship to reduce the expense of travelling to and from South Africa.