More than 10,000 British pubs will be able to show BT’s selection of Barclays Premier League football matches from this weekend.
Venues include 1,370 Betfred bookmakers as well as pubs, clubs, betting shops, and hotels, all paying up to 76 per cent of the cost of Sky’s commercial package.
BT Sport and the Barclays Premier League will kick off tomorrow with Liverpool v Stoke City at 12.45pm, with the first Sky Sports match – Swansea City v Manchester United – at 5.30pm.
Read Recombu Digital’s guides to BT Sport, Sky Sports and 2013 TV Sport PricesBruce Cuthbert, director of commercial customers at BT Sport, said: “Pre-season has gone incredibly well for the BT Sport team. Signing up more than 10,000 commercial customers before a ball is kicked in the Premier League is a fantastic achievement.
“We are particularly delighted that this includes brand new commercial customers for premium sports who have historically been unable to afford Sky’s high prices.
“Our success in the commercial TV sports market adds to our achievements in the consumer area, where more than a million households are ready to enjoy BT Sport and where we have agreed a deal with Virgin Media to make BT Sport available to its 3.8 million TV customers.”
As well as 38 live and exclusive Premier League matches, BT Sport’s pub-friendly assets include 69 live rugby matches from the Aviva Premiership, the Scottish Premier League plus 10 Rangers matches, FA Cup ties and the Final and live coverage from the UEFA Europa League.
As well as hoping to poach Sky’s pub customers, BT is also targeting the almost-half of Britain’s 75,000 pubs and clubs which show only free-to-air sport.
Commercial customers don’t require BT Broadband or BT Vision, and can use either BT Vision or BT’s YouView box via Infinity broadband, or an existing Sky box.
BT said it will arrange a free third party installation of a Sky box and dish for commercial customers who don’t have one. No Sky subscription is required for BT Sport.
If you enjoy BT’s coverage in the pub, you can find out the cheapest way to get BT Sport and Sky Sports with our 2013 TV sport price guide.