F.C. Barcelona has agreed to sell 10% of its media rights to private equity firm Sixth Street for $215.6 million (€207.5 million) for the next 25 years, the club announced this morning. The deal also includes streaming rights.
The deal is structured similarly to CVC Capital Partners’ $2.1 billion deal with LaLiga, which gives CVC an 8.25% stake in the league’s media rights for 50 years through Boost LaLiga, a joint venture the league formed with the private equity firm. Barcelona, along with three other of LaLiga’s top clubs, did not participate in the agreement with CVC.
Over 90% of LaLiga’s revenues are generated through the sale of media rights; most recently, LaLiga sold its domestic broadcast rights to DAZN and Movistar for $5.59 billion for the next five years.
Barcelona’s deal with Sixth Street, which closed on the last day of the 2021-2022 season, will help provide teams with a higher budget for the current transfer season. Since 2020, LaLiga has reduced the salary cap further, and the league’s top clubs are struggling to keep their expensive players.
Sixth Street declined to comment to Sportico.
Sixth Street first became involved in sports in 2021, when the firm acquired a combined 30% stake in the San Antonio Spurs as minority strategic partners together with Michael Dell. The firm also owns a majority stake in Legends, the hospitality management company launched by the owners of the New York Yankees and Dallas Cowboys. In May, Sixth Street and Legends signed a partnership agreement with Barcelona rivals Real Madrid C.F for $380 million, an investment that gives Sixth Street the right to participate in the operations of the new Santiago Bernabeu stadium for the next 20 years.
Barcelona’s delegates approved the sale for 25% of the clubs media revenues and an additional 49.95% of its merchandising division during club’s general assembly on June 16th. The remaining 15% of the media rights of the Blaugrana is still up for grabs.
This story has been updated to provide additional information.