Virgin Media and Setanta Sports unveil ground-breaking TV sports package

Virgin
Media and Setanta Sports announced their plans to transform the TV market by
giving new and existing customers who take Virgin Media’s XL basic TV package
six Setanta Sports Channels for free.

The
innovative and revolutionary deal means that, from the 26th July, pay TV
customers and sports enthusiasts will for the first time get a round-the-clock
diet of top flight sporting action without having to buy a separate sports
package.

Customers
will get live coverage from over 250 showcase events a year, among them some of
the biggest occasions in the sporting calendar. These will include 46 live
games from the Barclays Premier League, 60 matches from the Clydesdale Bank
Scottish Premier League and the US PGA Tour golf, as well as European league
Football rugby and horse racing from around the country. From 2008, customers
will also get 25 of the 40 televised fixtures from the English FA Cup, a
selection of

England
football Internationals and the Community Shield.

Over the
course of a year, diehard football fans who want all the live televised matches
from the Barclay’s Premier League will pay over 110 less with Virgin Media
than they would with Sky. Following changes in the ownership of broadcast
rights, the deal also means that, from the start of the new football season,
Virgin Media will be the only provider to offer all these matches under a
single contract.

The
combination of great content and unbeatable value will help make Virgin Media’s
XL package the

UK’s
best quality TV offer. This package is not a “one-off” promotional or
introductory offer and will form part of Virgin Media’s TV offer on an ongoing
basis. Customers of any other Virgin Media TV service who want to add these
Setanta channels to their service will be able to do so for just 8 a month.

Commenting
on the deal, Malcolm Wall, CEO of content for Virgin Media, said: “This deal
will transform the world of TV sport and makes our XL TV package the best of
its kind in the

UK.”

“When we
launched Virgin Media last February, we said we were going to shake things up,
provide something unique and give our customers superior offerings. Today we’re
making a down payment on our promise by giving our customers the very best sporting
action combined with unbeatable value. But this is only the beginning. In terms
of both sport and other new high value content, there’s much more to come from
Virgin Media.”

Michael
O’Rourke, co-founder of Setanta Sports, said: “This deal emphasises Setanta’s
determination to make premium sports content available to as many people as
possible, at the best value possible.

“Virgin
Media’s XL customers will be absolutely delighted to get our sports channels
for no additional charge. They will receive 46 exclusively live Premier League
games, 60 Scottish Premier League games and all the live US PGA Tour Golf. It
is compelling viewing for all sports fans, and the addition of the FA Cup and

England
internationals next year will make it even better.”