The South African Football Association has announced the signing of a ground-breaking broadcast rights deal between the football body and Siyaya TV for the transmission of official South African national team games. The deal has been confirmed to be worth a staggering R1 billion ($93.6 million).

The deal will see the soon to be launched Siyaya TV hold the exclusive rights for live broadcast of all Bafana Bafana and Banyana Banyana matches (friendly games inclusive), the junior national teams, the ABC Motsepe League (First Division), Sasol Women’s League, the SAFA Magazine Programme (Safa TV) and the annual SAFA Awards.

It is also understood that as part of the deal, SAFA will aid Siyaya TV in acquiring rights to events from FIFA, UEFA and CAF

The deal with Siyaya TV ousts the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), which currently holds the rights until April 2015, from the transmission of games of the South African national teams- something it has done for the last few years. The deal with SABC netted SAFA only R45 million a year.

In this period, the rights were tremendously undervalued due to government policy which required national team games to be transmitted by a public broadcaster as the national teams were termed ‘national assets’.  The new deal will see the SABC needing to reach a secondary agreement with Siyaya TV to transmit any Bafana Bafana games.

The new broadcast deal comes as a huge blow to the SABC and is similar to the situation in 2006 when SuperSport agreed a R1.6 billion deal with the Premier Soccer League for the transmission of the South African local league games.

The new deal with Siyaya TV takes effect from May 1, 2015.

Siyaya TV is set to go live next June and is the new entrant in the South African television sector is a 100 percent black owned consortium.

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