Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Discovery, BBC sign deal to cover four Olympics

Discovery Communications Inc. and the British Broadcasting Corp. struck a television broadcasting deal covering the U.K. rights for the next four Olympic Games between 2018 and 2024.

Discovery will sub-license exclusive pay-TV rights in the U.K. to the 2018 and 2020 games, while the BBC has TV and radio rights for the 2022 and 2024 Olympics in the country, Discovery said in a statement Tuesday. The 2012 London Olympic Games were watched on the BBC by more than 50 million people in the U.K., with 7 million people accessing the BBC’s website daily, the company said.

Discovery said in June it will pay 1.3 billion euros ($1.4 billion) for exclusive European broadcast rights to air the next four Olympics on platforms from TVs to tablet computers. That deal excluded the 2022 and 2024 U.K. rights as they’d already been secured by the BBC. Discovery will mostly air the games through its Eurosport channel, except for Russia, to an audience estimated at around 700 million people, Discovery said at the time.

The Silver Spring, Maryland-based company, which counts cable-TV billionaire John Malone as an investor, is aiming for 65 percent of revenue from its international business in three years and has been vocal about buying more programming and using its Eurosport channel to broadcast exclusive sporting rights.