The Ghana FA has rejected claims by the Ghana Broadcasting Association (GBC) that it was treated unfairly by the association in its decision to award the exclusive TV broadcast rights of the Ghana Premier League to Chinese pay-tv company, StarTimes.
GBC issued a statement on Thursday saying that the FA’s move was not fair since they made a superior bid in terms of finance as compared to StarTimes.
But the Ghana FA in a statement to respond to the claim accused GBC of peddling falsehood in its claim.
The FA said GBC sent initial bids to the FA but the bids in question did not meet the FA’s valuation. The FA went on to say that the GBC presented two more bids after the December 10, 2019 deadline but those were also not accepted by the FA ultimately because of some terms in them including getting 30% of sponsorship money that would be accrued to the league.
The FA further said the process of evaluating the various bids that were brought in was a very fair one and it was in accordance with the deadline stated.
Below is the full statement from the Ghana FA:
The Ghana Football Association (GFA) has taken note of a statement by the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC) on the Television Broadcast Rights granted to StarTimes by the GFA, at the end of the bidding process.
The GFA is shocked by the deliberate misinformation in the statement and wishes to respond with the facts as follows:
1. On December 5, 2019, the Ghana Football Association (GFA) issued a statement to invite bids from media organisations for television broadcast rights for its competitions or any combination of its competitions. (Premier League, Division One League, Women’s Premier League, FA Cup and Women’s FA Cup).
2. The deadline for submission of bid was 5 p.m. on Tuesday December 10, 2019.
3. At the end of the bid deadline, GBC had submitted two different bids:
a. The first bid was for Free To Air TV – Exclusive Media Rights, Digital Rights and Radio Rights for the territory of Ghana for 4 years at a proposed fee of GHc8,800,000 (GHc 2,200.000 per season) for all the five GFA Competitions named above.
b. The second bid was for Exclusive Media Rights for Ghana and Global for 4 years at a proposed fee of GH 10,200,000 (GH 2,550.000 per season) and a fee of GH 200,000 for radio (GH 50,000 per season) for all the five competitions.
4. The GBC bid also had conditions attached to the bid, among them a revenue share on any Title Sponsorship that the GFA secured for its competitions (GBC wanted 20% share).
5. The GFA Bid Evaluation Team had a meeting with GBC and informed them that none of the two bids they submitted met the valuation of the GFA. At that same meeting, GBC was told they were 3rd in the GFA’s valuation. However, the GFA, in light of that, has made the highlights of the Ghana Premier League and the FA Cup non exclusive in order for GBC to benefit from it.
6. It was at this meeting that GBC representatives indicated that they would consult their bosses and revert to the GFA.
7. On January 2, 2020, GBC emailed a 3rd and 4th bids (note that these were long after the deadline of the bidding period which ended at 5 p.m. on December 10, 2019). The late bid were as follows:
a. The third bid (out of time) was for Exclusive FTA and Digital Rights for Ghana and Global for four (4) years for a proposed fee of GH 12,000,000 (GH 3,000,000 per season) for all five GFA competitions with condition to have a share in GFA Title Sponsorship (30% for GBC).
b. The 4th bid (out of time) was for an exclusive television and digital rights for Ghana and Global for 4 years for GH 25,080,000 (GH 6,270,000 per season) for Ghana Premier League and FA Cup with a condition to have a share of Title Sponsorship if the GFA secured one (30% share for GBC).
8. It must be stated unequivocally that evaluation of bids is not only about the financials but includes all conditions, such as those GBC stated in their proposal, such as the 30% share GBC wanted on all Title Sponsorships.
9. Of utmost importance is the fact that the net value of the bid of GBC was actually lower than the amount quoted in the bid because of the proposed revenue share of Title Sponsorship (eg. should we activate that clause on the MTN FA Cup Title Sponsorship amount).
10. It must be stated clearly that even if only financials alone were considered, the 4th bid of GBC (which was out of time) was not the bid with the highest financial consideration. Two other proposals were higher than the GBC bids but other conditions (due diligence) affected those bids.
11. The GFA, having gone out of its way to make the highlights show non-exclusive for the benefit of all television stations, does not deserve the deliberate misinformation issued by GBC.
12. In conclusion, the GFA wishes to assure its members and all stakeholders that the evaluation conducted on the bid was very thorough and was strictly in compliance with the deadline issued to the Ghanaian public and the world at large.
The GFA on January 8, 2019 named Start Times as the Television Rights Holder of the Ghana Premier League and the FA Cup.
It said, “StarTimes emerged winners of the competitive bidding process after the GFA accepted their offer, which was the best among other bids.”
StarTimes will sign a five-year agreement with the GFA worth $5.25m US Dollars to be the exclusive Television Rights owner of the Ghana Premier League and the FA Cup with immediate effect.