MultiChoice Group was not successful in obtaining the broadcasting rights for the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) 2023–24. The dominant broadcaster said that it is doubtful that the tournament, which is scheduled to start in Ivory Coast on January 13, would air on its SuperSport channel.


The Super Eagles are scheduled to play in Group A against Equatorial Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, and the host nation. SuperSport was supposed to provide live coverage of the tournament for sub-Saharan African football fans.


AFCON TV CHANNELS IN Kenya live


The revelation from MultiChoice has negatively impacted the watching possibilities for many football fans in sub-Saharan African nations, with less than ten days till the championship.


Over 23 million people in 50 African nations are MultiChoice's customers via DStv and GOtv. With an extensive history of reliably covering continental football championships, the firm continues to be one of Africa's largest broadcast powerhouses.


HOW, THEN, DID MULTICHOICE NOT ACHIEVE THE RIGHT TO BROADCASTING?

With Togolese audiovisual company New World TV, CAF announced in December 2023 that the two parties had reached a "historic media rights agreement" for the transmission of all 13 of the federation's events to sub-Saharan African audiences for a period of two years.


The deal was dubbed "the biggest investment by a Pan-African broadcaster in CAF's history" by CAF President Patrice Motsepe. The agreement, which is good for the next AFCON and the tournament's following edition, runs from 2023 to 2025.


The broadcast deal is valued at $80 million, according to SABC. Since MultiChoice would have to go via New World TV in order to broadcast the tournaments, MultiChoice would be eliminated from the competition.


New World TV: What is it?

The broadcasting firm New World TV was established in 2015 in Togo's capital city of Lome. The corporation operates in more than 16 African countries, mostly Francophone ones, and has both Free-to-Air (FTA) and Pay TV licences.


But in March 2021, a broadcasting corporation from a small West African nation with a GDP of under $8 billion startled the whole world by snagging the rights to transmit the 2022 World Cup in Qatar across Sub-Saharan Africa's Francophone nations.


Additionally, the business obtained the rights to the 2024–2028 European Championships and the 2023 Women's World Cup. According to the Africa Report, New World TV is under the control of a group based in Paris and headed by general manager Kolani Nimonka.


There are rumours that the firm has the support of the Togolese government. The allegations started when New World TV sent many football players, including Emmanuel Petit, Marcel Desailly, and Emmanuel Adebayor, to the nation for a two-day workshop in September 2023, and the government was said to have offered logistical and security assistance.


New World TV, however, denied the allegations. The firm claims that it has the support of Togo's regional banks. Despite its aspirations and financial might, New World TV's viewer reach across Africa is still quite small.


It currently serves just 19 Francophone countries on the continent. By the middle of 2022, New World TV had just over 100,000 customers. The number is negligible when compared to MultiChoice, Canal+, and BeIn's cross-continental reach.


Additionally, there were rumours that the business experienced hacks while airing the 2022 FIFA World Cup. New World TV would be attempting to sublicense the AFCON broadcast rights to pay-TV services and free-to-air stations in African nations because of its small viewership.


Where can I watch Afcon in Kenya?

There isn't any direct pay TV network that has revealed its intentions to broadcast the next AFCON, with the exception of viewers in Francophone nations. K24 TV will air the competition live in Kenya, with free-to-air matches on K24 TV and paid-to-air matches on the K24 Plus App.


There are rumours that MultiChoice and New World TV are still negotiating sublicensing for English-speaking nations, although the specifics and agreement's status are unknown.


Startimes to air AFCON 2024 

StarTimes Kenya said on January 2 that it would broadcast the tournament.


"StarTimes will broadcast AFCON 2023 live! Which team do you think will win the championship? Starting on January 13, you may view ALL AFCON events live on StarTimes sports channels or on the StarTimes ON mobile app," the firm said on Instagram.


According to a close friend of StarTimes Nigeria, the broadcaster would show the competition in Nigeria. He also said that StarTimes and New World TV had reached a sublicensing agreement and that a public statement would follow shortly.


 

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