Following the news that Sky has decided to freeze its prices for the forthcoming year, the ALMR has welcomed the move and urged Sky to implement further freezes to encourage stability and certainty for licensees on the longer term.
Sky has also announced that, as well as freezing prices for licensed premises for the 2015/16 Premier League season, the company will also introduce a new online marketing promotion for licensees.
ALMR Chief Executive Kate Nicholls said: “Sky’s commitment to freezing prices and customer support under its Go Further range is welcome news for licensees facing tightening margins in an increasingly competitive marketplace. There was concern amongst the licensed trade that customers would bear the burden of a very competitive battle to retain television rights of Premier League football and it is pleasing to see, at least in the short term, that this has not been the case.
“A price freeze will provide licensees with some degree of assurance, but we would like to see Sky match its commitment to broadcasting Premier League football for the foreseeable future with a commitment to sustainable pricing for licensees. Although Sky will be broadcasting a considerable number of Premier League fixtures, pubs and bars will have to look to their competitors for other competitions such as the UEFA Champions League and this brings increased costs.
“Research carried out by the ALMR showed that around 40% of licensed premises have a subscription, with the average annual cost across the ALMR’s membership standing at £15,000. There is clearly an appetite for enjoying live sport in the pub and this price restraint should give the sector confidence, provided they are not footing the bill for an expensive broadcasting package in the long term.”