The AFL has sold its TV rights to Foxtel and The Seven Network for a record-breaking Australian contract worth US$4.5 billion over seven years.
- The AFL’s new deal with Foxtel and Channel Seven is valued at $643 million per year for seven years
- From 2025, Channel Seven will be showing three games per round live on free-to-air television
- Gillon McLachlan said the deal was “an incredible result” for the AFL
The previous contract, signed during the COVID-19 pandemic, was valued at $473 million each for the 2023 and 2024 seasons.
The new deal is valued at $643 million per year.
“This partnership is an incredible result, unprecedented and the biggest in Australian sport,” said AFL General Manager Gillon McLachlan.
From 2025, Seven will show at least three games per week on free-to-air channels, while Foxtel and its streaming arm Kayo Sports will broadcast all nine AFL and AFLW games per round under the new deal.
All AFL finals will be broadcast on free-to-air television, while Seven will also show all 15 Thursday night games.
Foxtel and Kayo will have exclusive rights to the Saturday games for the first eight rounds of the seven seasons.
“The combination of Seven and Foxtel is by far the best for any sport,” said James Warburton, Seven’s chief executive.
The AFL solicited bids from other syndicates, including Nine and its streaming arm Stan, as well as Ten Network and Paramount+.
McLachlan said he wanted to thank the competing partners.
“We got the right commercial deal for our fans, our clubs, our players and our communities… and I think our long history counts,” he said.
Foxtel has been broadcasting the AFL since 2002, while Seven has aired the game continuously since 2007.
The deal is a swan song for McLachlan, who is stepping down at the end of this season.
McLachlan said the deal was “considering” a 19-team competition and he was confident of going to AFL clubs “in the coming weeks” to discuss a Tasmanian team joining the AFL.
The free-to-air coverage is unprecedented, he added, and will remain as comprehensive as the previous agreement.
“Of course we’re moving some Saturday games to Thursday,” he said.
McLachlan said the AFL will spend more money on grassroots football, including new dressing rooms for girls’ and women’s football teams.
Foxtel, which says it has 4.5 million subscribers, including through Kayo, will have its own commentators for all games.
So far, Foxtel has broadcast some games through Channel 7’s commentary feed.