Extension to CFL/TSN Deal Expected

From Dan Barnes:

It appears the Canadian Football League and TSN have been huddling up at the highest levels and will be announcing a new, long-term partnership before the end of this season.

Well-placed sources say the league and the all-sports television network have agreed on a six-year deal that runs through the 2025 season and should be worth about $50 million to the CFL, though that number could grow significantly as there will be incentives, ratings-based and otherwise, written into the contract.

A TSN spokesperson said in an email that the company does not comment on rights negotiations, while a CFL spokesperson did not immediately respond to Postmedia’s request for comment on Friday.

The current agreement was scheduled to run through 2021 but there was apparently impetus from both the league and TSN to hammer out a long-term arrangement that functions more as a partnership than a rights deal, so it is believed the final two years were reworked and four more were added.

Revenue certainty is obviously preferable to the alternative, so it makes nothing but sense for the CFL to seek an extension, particularly one that will offer a healthy base amount that each of the nine franchises can rely upon, and also leave top-end room if ratings trend upward, as both the CFL and TSN would hope and expect.

It’s especially important if and when the CFL adds an expansion franchise in Halifax. Principals with the Atlantic Schooners are now hopeful of a 2021 kickoff, most likely in an existing stadium in Moncton, before switching to an as-yet-unbuilt venue in Halifax after a season or two.

The CFL will be charging the Schooners’ owners an expansion fee, of course, and a lucrative, long-term TV deal will surely bolster the value of a 10th franchise.

glad the Toronto Sun got the scoop. They have stuck by the CFL in good times and bad.

Was hoping for a bigger contract, don’t know what the upside will be but we need to put the league on a strong footing so we don’t hear about teams losing money again. If the league wants bigger we need to get this behind us

Disappointing news. With a contract extension TSN has zero incentive to improve the on air product

6 more years of Rod Black, 6 more years of sideline interviews that cause plays to be missed, 6 more years of split screen during mic’s games, 6 more years of going to commercial with a flag on the field and never being told what it was, 6 more years of missing the start of games unless you PVR the 1 of 4 channels that does go to the game, 6 more years of non national TV coverage, 6 more years of missed plays while you watch a commercial, 6 more years…

TSN will only get worse from here

It will be interesting to get further details of what this “partnership” thing will entail . . . or will that just be a more impressive-sounding way of labeling the same old same old?

Please note

Well-placed sources say the league and the all-sports television network have agreed on a six-year deal that runs through the 2025 season and should be worth about $50 million to the CFL, though that number could grow significantly as there will be incentives, ratings-based and otherwise, written into the contract.
An extension with an INCREASE is just that and a victory before there is some recession too. I don't know how you all feel in Canada, but in many sectors of the US already especially amongst the wealthy, there is quite a bit of nervousness that includes some spending declines in the luxury retail sector, high-end real estate, and in expensive specialized machinery/capital for firms.

As much more for which we have hoped, let’s not forget this locks in TSN in feast or famine at a higher amount.

Also not to be overlooked are these incentives for TSN in the contract.

I am not sure how or to what degree the CFL maintains a say on scheduling of games, which for example by great contrast the NFL does with its media partners to an extremely high degree to the point of they can almost take a very long walk if they don’t oblige, but at the very least more skin in the game for TSN via not only ratings would seem to make for far better programming decisions than the following this season:

  • No game until Sunday on Labour Day weekend
  • Two weeks in a row of triple headers in September
  • The amateur hour of the studio that is Thursday night football and most of the production compared to the past seasons

Also not to be overlooked is that a new team is in the works for launch, and TSN will be a big part of the promotion and stakes for success of a new CFL franchise that is seldom likely to be overnight including in particular when the venue is smaller and temporary.

TSN had to factor in their investment of additional resources for 18 games per season minimum for a new market, but of course they are not totally new to the Maritimes given the success also of the last broadcast of a game there.

Here’s a great article putting the CFL TV contract into perspective. It’s peanuts.

Good grief if this is accurate in terms of increase .

Why on earth would you not remove the bundling and monopoly so you enjoy the competitive nature in the advertising business that’s the entire scope of the league’s media rights .

All pro sports are getting a huge increase in value because of the now in sports programming . It’s on fire like Real estate . How do you not have a gradual increase with the value that depends on gradual growth in advertising .

TSN is responsible for ratings so why would the deal depend on that . WTF .

Baseball numbers are down but they increase anyways so is every other sport it’s increased despite the numbers game . Its not measured as before the factors for value in sports is the attachments to the sport . You can’t do that properly with a controlling interest that has different goals than the best interest of the sport .

No autonomy for scheduling , No extra exposure on CTV or over the air and small increase amounts is a beggars approach to the CFL business case .

This years TSN advertisers have gone gangbusters and done their job …

No dr ho , jiffy mops or tech lites . Its three divisions of vehicles at least , a deal with 7 eleven , etc … .etc … very impressed with the quality of sponsors and advertisers .

They must have shaken things up from last year to this year in their sales crew .

The Argos and Als must be creating a huge hole the CFL may never recover from to be a independent enterprise in the future and I doubt many like myself will stay for the ride to oblivion if there is no direction in creating a stronger fan base in Canada than the current model and making sure no one owner is overly influencing the direction of the league .

This deal sounds like a gun to the head deal not a proper business case that would run to 2025 if the numbers are accurate .

Hope this is wrong and the numbers are much stronger and their is autonomy for the CFL schedule that TSN follows and not the other way around .

More Exposure , more Canadian expansion , more Canadian talent and proper shelf space within the cluster of sports entertainment is number one if you actually want growth within Canada’s sports landscape .

and ambrosie, like nero, is very happily watching cfl burn

cfl NEEDS eyebalss - put it in ctv or cbc
cfl demands a sub to watch any of their games
nhl doesnt
nfl doesnt
mlb doesnt for playoffs

cfl 2.1 ?

Go back and re read my concerns with TSN. Not a single issue I have is a money issue. They can ALL be fixed without spending a dime on the product yet increase the entertainment value (Rod Black the exception for some ;)) of the product exponentially.

What incentive is there for TSN to fix any of these problems let alone any more serious problems that require a financial input to resolve; ZERO incentive. With no competition for the contract TSN can just carry on in the slip shod fashion they have been for several years now. TSN broadcast will get a lot worse before they ever get better and they won’t improve until the CFL starts courting other broadcasters.

This is NOT good news for fans.

It appears by the article it was TSN that has the incentive to lock up with the league as opposed to the other way around.

So why extend a favourable deal? Well, without hearing it from anyone at TSN who was directly involved in the negotiations, how can this not be about the very real threat that global streaming companies pose to more traditional TV networks? Think specifically about the landscape in Canada. The CFL is partially aligned with the new Canadian Premier League that has brought another professional soccer loop to Canada, with teams in Hamilton, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Calgary, Halifax, Victoria and York. The Winnipeg Blue Bombers own Valour FC, while the Tiger-Cats’ so-called caretaker Bob Young owns the Hamilton Forge. The CPL kicked off its debut season last spring by signing a 10-year streaming deal with Mediapro, a Spanish media conglomerate that generated revenues equal to $2.7 billion CDN in 2017. It has been reported, but not confirmed by anyone with the CPL or Mediapro, that the deal is worth $200 million, so $20 million per year. For a fledgling, domestic soccer start-up, that’s really good money.
I'm curious to hear about the terms of what these incentives are over and above the 50 million/year. I would think they're significant enough so they don't risk losing the rights to some of the newer players. Overall, I'm willing to wait for the details once this is formally announced before making any judgements. Still, even with TV ratings down and a declining medium due to cord cutting, they're still getting an increase right off the back before other incentives after many here said the next TV deal would pay less. Now with a new deal on the horizon, the sky is always falling for some on these parts.

Great news ?

TSN is the best! Hopefully they keep their broadcast crews as I think their knowledge of the game is 2nd to none.

this is humour right ?

Not sure you can’t correlate the Argos and now the Alouettes as consuming money both from the league and the Toronto franchise that has to be bleeding huge money from the same pot the media rights holder gets its profit from however you move the cash around .

This is not the type of deal that the CFL would have with a independent owner in the two large metro franchises .

This is not the right time to make this deal they are not strong enough to bargain properly .

I’ll be very interested in the exact terms, too. What role, as “partner” will TSN play? What investments will they, as partner to the league, make? Will those partner investments serve as a way for the league to circumvent paying the players more, since the salary cap is tied to future increases in broadcast rights.

The Toronto sun article says $50 million ANNUALLY. Is that correct? Can’t be

I’m pretty okay with it. We are in very interesting times when it come to sports media rights and distribution, who knows what the landscape will be like by 2025? There are enough rumours going around that rights values overall could drop.

In light of that, getting a substantial (50/43 = 16%) increase two years earlier, while giving us stability to ride out the next 6 years of media changes, is pretty good I think. It also sounds like that’s the floor, and incentives only take it upwards.

I would also assume that since we have a group actively trying to get an expansion franchise, there are contingencies built in to cover what changes need to made when the Schooners join.

The provided stability will also make it more attractive to buy the Als and Lions.

Overall, without hearing specific details about scheduling or the incentives, sounds like a win.

Was thinking the exact same thing

Right on bro! It’s simply a first-class partnership and like anything in life, even the best of the best first-class isn’t perfect and shouldn’t be expected to be so. I’m sure there are always discussions of ways of improving within budget and other constraint lines.

This simply allows are the CFL to continue to stay with a fairly solid foundation and I think that is a real positive for the league.

The amount the players will make on any increase is 20%. With that feature locked in for 2 more seasons, yeah it is something interesting to chew on with the league getting this deal done now,T as the CBA expires the same same as the current TV deal. Though it seems like TSN is anxious too.

If the increase with incentives is as significant as the artcile suggests, the league getting 2 years now with the player’s cut locked in may be a way for the owners to have this ‘front loaded’ to them in a sense and get this done early.

Does it involve marketing and official status for brands like other leagues have that offset ticket sales . That would be true partnership but it must expand from just media but expand to co branding that other pros have done like MLB despite the drop in numbers they make more money with half empty stadiums .

One thing you see is the complete 360 in advertising with large brands this year .

Been watching the CFL for years and the advertising last year and this year is night and day .

GMC and the elevation commercial in complete repeat cycle never happens anymore and this is from just two years out .

The Friday night advertising is HOT as heck if anyone watched tonight on TSN 1 .
Can’t speak for the other regions if they were breaking up the markets but TSN 1 was impressive from an advertising aspect . Cheers for whoever is selling the league in that office space .