Bundesliga private equity raise enters next bidding round as KKR dropped

May 9 – The on-off German Bundesliga foray into raising private equity finance via a sell-off of a stake in its media rights, has seen US private equity firm KKR drop out of the latest round of bidding, according to reports.

Bloomberg quotes sources saying that KKR’s offer was viewed as too low for the 12.5% stake in the business that will manage the domestic and international TV rights of the 36 teams in the Bundesliga’s two tiers. The Bundesliga is now at the stage of reducing the number of bidders.

KKR is already a major investor in media group Axel Springer, which has rights  to highlight videos of all matches in Germany’s two top leagues.

The bidders have been asked to provide a long-term proposal covering up to 30 years of rights.

CVC Capital Partners, Blackstone, EQT AB, and Advent International are all said to be still in the bidding.

CVC is already a big player in financing Europe’s major leagues, with an 8.25% stake in La Liga’s audiovisual rights for the next 50 years that cost €1.994 billion ($2.1bn) – Barcelona and Real Madrid opted out of the deal. In March 2022, CVC bought 13% of France’s Ligue 1 broadcast rights for $1.5 billion.

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