Billionaire Blavatnik's firm injects $4.3 bln into British sports media group DAZN

Internet streaming service DAZN's logo is pictured in its office in Tokyo
Internet streaming service DAZN's logo is pictured in its office in Tokyo, Japan March 21, 2017. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon

Feb 18 (Reuters) - DAZN Group announced a $4.3 billion capital injection by its backer and billionaire investor Len Blavatnik's firm on Friday, as the British sports media company looks to expand into recreational betting, gaming and non-fungible tokens.

Sports broadcasters have been investing billions of dollars in live sporting events as they attract a big number of audiences, and pay TV providers as well as streaming services are willing to pay a premium to stream games.

The investment comes after Spain's LaLiga soccer league in December sold its domestic broadcasting rights to Movistar and DAZN for 4.95 billion euros ($5.62 billion) over five years. read more

The media company also said its biggest shareholder Access Industries, founded and chaired by Blavatnik, subscribed for another $250 million of its new shares.

The company, which also hosts coverage of the Bundesliga in Germany and is home to more than 700 live and on-demand sport rights around the globe, said the recapilization by Access has left the group without any borrowings at the end of 2021.

DAZN had walked away from a deal to buy BT Sports, which would have given it the sought-after rights to the English Premier League and UEFA Champions League matches, a source had told Reuters earlier this month. read more

($1 = 0.8803 euros)

Reporting by Yadarisa Shabong in Bengaluru; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel

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