RTÉ RETAINS COMPREHENSIVE GAA CHAMPIONSHIP RIGHTS FOR IRISH AUDIENCES
AND IS TO
LAUNCH INTERNATIONAL ONLINE SERVICE IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE GAA
The GAA today (Tuesday 1 April, 2014) announced that RTÉ has retained the rights for comprehensive GAA Championship coverage across RTÉ’s television, radio, and online (Island of Ireland) services for the next three seasons, guaranteeing quality free-to-air coverage to audiences in Ireland up to and including 2017.
RTÉ has secured:
- 4 live television packages for the GAA Championships
- 3 live radio packages – One GAA Championships and two National League
- The Sunday night television highlights package
Today’s announcement means that RTÉ over the next three years will deliver:
- Live coverage of the All-Ireland Finals, Semi-Finals and Provincial Finals on RTÉ Television, RTÉ Player and RTÉ.ie (IOI live and on demand)
- Over 31 live Championship games on RTÉ Television, RTÉ Player and RTÉ.ie (IOI live and on demand).
- First-choice radio-broadcast rights for the GAA Championships ensuring that RTÉ Radio 1 emerge with the first-choice of games on both Saturdays and Sundays throughout the Championships and exclusive live coverage of the National Leagues
- Championship highlights and analysis each week on RTÉ Television’s The Sunday Game
- Weekly GAA Championship TV magazine programme
- Weekly National League highlights programme on RTÉ Two
- Weekly GAA Championship radio magazine programme
- Live coverage on RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta
- Extensive RTÉ News coverage on RTÉ One and RTÉ Two television,
RTÉ Radio 1, RTÉ 2fm, RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta
Ryle Nugent, Group Head of Sport, RTÉ, said, “In an increasingly competitive market, we are delighted to retain these television and radio rights on behalf of the Irish public ensuring that coverage of Gaelic games is delivered free-to-air to Irish audiences until 2017. We in RTÉ Sport are conscious of our long standing heritage with the GAA while also being passionate about constantly evolving our coverage. Year-on-year increases for RTÉ’s GAA Championship content across all platforms underlines the fact that the Irish public are fully engaged with our comprehensive coverage. Given the financial challenges that RTÉ faces, we have had to prioritise our investment in securing sports rights to deliver coverage of our national teams, national games and major events and we are delighted to retain these rights and to continue sharing this major Irish sporting and cultural experience with the Irish public”.
Following a separate process, the GAA and RTÉ are to launch an online international paid-for service offering Gaelic games to audiences worldwide. Beginning during the All-Ireland Senior Championships 2014, this new service will enable fans around the world to experience the unique excitement of the GAA Championships on their personal device live or later, whenever and wherever they want.
Games will be streamed in high-quality HD and will include full commentary, scores, and studio programming as broadcast to audiences in Ireland. The online service will enable users to watch the games on iPad or Android tablet, laptop, PC, Smart TV, or on mobile phone.
Múirne Laffan, MD RTÉ Digital, said: “We have listened to our audience, throughout the world. I’m delighted that this innovative collaboration between RTÉ & the GAA to create an online international paid for service will now enable us to deliver and showcase Gaelic games across the world and to serve a need which we know has existed for a long time. This is in line with RTÉ’s strategy to meet the demands of our international audience and to build new business opportunities, which will in turn support the range of public services that RTÉ delivers.”
Further details on this international online service will be announced at a launch this month.
Engaging the Audience
RTÉ’s GAA Championship coverage received increased audiences across all platforms last season. RTÉ Two’s The Sunday Game Live saw a series average increase of 4,500 viewers year-on-year*, while RTÉ Radio 1’s Saturday Sport and Sunday Sport saw listenership increases of 43,000*** and 34,000**** respectively year-on-year. Last year’s All Ireland Senior Football Championship Final on RTÉ Television also attracted the highest ever viewership for an All Ireland Football Final, peaking at over 1.3 million viewers in the final minute of the match when Dublin won out against Mayo.
There were 1.08m***** streams served of RTÉ’s GAA Championship coverage on RTÉ Player and RTÉ.ie last season representing a 46% growth on 2012.
There were a total of 11.9m****** page views of GAA content on RTÉ.ie from May to September 2013 up 63% on the same period of 2012.
Sharon Brady, Senior Communications Manager, RTÉ Television & RTÉ Digital. Sharon.firstname.lastname@example.org 087 6858975.
Note to Editors:
n Audience Data
*The Sunday Game Live 2013 -series average viewership was 390,400 and a 42.86% audience share
The Sunday Game Live 2012- series average viewership was 385,900 and a 41.14%% audience share
** One-minute peak viewership, Live + VOSDAL
Data Source for Television Viewership: TAM Ireland/Nielsen
***Saturday Sport 2013 series average listenership – 185,000 listeners
Saturday Sport 2012 series average listenership – 142,000 listeners
****Sunday Sport 2013 series average listenership – 171,000 listeners
Sunday Sport 2012 series average listenership – 137,000
Data Source for Radio Listenership : JNLR/IPSOS MRBI
*****1.08m streams of RTÉ’s GAA Championship coverage in 2013 across RTÉ Player and RTÉ.ie (The Sunday Game Live/ The Saturday Game Live/ The Sunday Game). Representing a 46% increase on 737,000 streams of 2012.
******Total of 11.9m page views on RTÉ.ie/gaa from May to September 2013 up from 7.3m in the same period of 2012. Year on year growth of 63%.
- Data Source- Urchin Analytics
- Details on RTÉ’s bid for the domestic TV and Radio rights are commercially sensitive.
- The collaboration with the GAA to provide paid for services internationally is part of RTÉ’s Five Year Strategy to develop international markets and to build new revenue streams.
- RTÉ is a dual-funded PSB and saw commercial revenues, primarily advertising, decline by €95 million between 2008 and 2013, a reduction of 40%. In addition, public funding levels have also reduced by €19 million in the same period.
- Combined, this represents a total reduction in annual revenues of €113 million over the last five years, a reduction of some 26%.
- In response, and in order to return to financial break-even, RTÉ has reduced its operating cost base by 30% since 2008, while maintaining all of its public services.
- Between 2008 and the end of 2013 almost 500 full-time staff departed, a reduction of 21% in the workforce
- RTÉ will report a breakeven for 2013
n RTÉ’s participation in the provision of paid for international services is subject to ministerial approval.