Zodiak Broadcasting Station (ZBS) has outsmarted other radio stations in the country to acquire exclusive live match broadcasting rights from TopSport for this weekend’s two-day Zambezi Soccer Challenge. This means, no other station will broadcast the matches live, which start this Saturday at the Kamuzu Stadium, unless ZBS decides to re-sell the rights, the station’s managing director Gospel Kazako said on Tuesday. “We have signed a contract and paid for the rights. This assures our listenership of the best coverage of the tournament from Nsanje to Chitipa. As for the amount we paid, that is confidential. If anyone wants to access the rights, they have to contact us and we will decide if approached,” Kazako explained. The rights, however, do not extend to television stations. TopSport operations manager Kevin Moyo also refused to disclose how much ZBS paid for the rights. But part of the contract agreement is that ZBS will advertise TopSport partners alongside the station’s own partners. “All broadcasters were told a month and half ago and it was only on Friday that they started showing interest.
Zodiak were pushing for the rights and hold exclusive rights for the tournament. It’s a new thing in Malawi but that is the way to go. There are non-exclusive and exclusive rights. When one first buys non-exclusive rights, it tends to block the exclusive rights,” Moyo explained. TopSport pegged non-exclusive rights at K100 000 (about $250) per game for Saturday’s semi-finals and K150 000 (about $375) for the final on Sunday or K300 000 (about $750) when the rights are bought at once as one package.
Exclusive rights cost more, said Moyo whose firm got a licence to host the tournament from FAM. Malawi Broadcasting Corporation sports desk head Frank Kandu on Wednesday said the pioneer live match State broadcaster “may as well not broadcast live on radio because it means we have to buy rights from Zodiak and rates will be even higher than what TopSport were offering.” Matindi FM sports head Williams Gondwa on Wednesday claimed that they approached a ZBS marketing official seeking to buy the rights “but we were told that they are not selling the rights to any other radio station. In South Africa, SuperSport resells rights to other broadcasters, why should that not be possible here?” But Kazako yesterday insisted that they are not blocking any radio station from broadcasting the matches and that the rights would be resold as “we look at other radio stations as our partners.” FACT FACTS: SuperSport International (Pty) bought exclusive broadcasting rights for the South Africa Premier Soccer League at R1.6 billion for a five-year period. SkySport holds exclusive rights for the English Premier League teams and football in general generates its principal earnings from the rights.