ESPN has acquired minority ownership in the Arena Football League as part of a five-year broadcast agreement. The deal includes extensive multimedia rights and a minimum of 26 televised games per season, beginning this year.
More than 15 ESPN platforms will benefit from the new agreement, including ESPN; ESPN2; ESPN on ABC; ESPN Classic; ESPN HD and ESPN2 HD; ESPN.com; Spanish-language ESPN Deportes; ESPN360, the company’s interactive and customizable broadband service; Mobile ESPN Publishing, the wireless content licensing business; ESPN Radio; ESPN The Magazine;and other ESPN-branded services.
ESPN also gains the right to both air and syndicate AFL games through ESPN International. The network will televise a minimum of 17 regular-season games and nine playoff games — including a minimum three wild card games, three playoff games, both Conference Championships and the Arena Bowl — on ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC.