According to industry sources, European promotional giants Team Sauerland will have a busy summer when it comes to the television side of the business. This year their existing deal with German television partner ARD expires and yesterday the public broadcaster announced that a decision will be taken in the summer regarding boxing and that the current deal in its existing form would not be renewed and that there would be discussions on the new format in the coming months.
German boxing made a real comeback last year and Team Sauerland was particularly beneficial to the trend with current champions Arthur Abraham, Yoan Pablo Hernandez, Marco Huck and Juergen Braehmer in their ranks. Other broadcasters have in recent times also either entered the market or consolidated their position with private broadcasters RTL showing the Klitschko fights and Pro7/Sat 1 also making a strong entry into the boxing market by signing Felix Sturm and also recently acquired the rights for the all-German showdown between Arthur Abraham and Robert Stieglitz.
With the current state of the market and Sauerland’s dominant position the future looks bright for the company founded in the late 1970’s but it will be interesting, after 13 years of being with the public broadcaster, and a move to a private station and a potential pay-strategy is becoming increasingly likely. Over recent years Team Sauerland has expanded abroad to Scandinavia signing a large and long term agreement with private broadcaster Viasat, a move which has seen more than a dozen young stars joining the established figure head brand of Mikkel Kessler in the ‘Nordic Fight Night’ series. Team Sauerland is also expected to begin promoting shows in Norway as well when the professional boxing ban is lifted later this year, not just with Norwegian talent but also bringing in big international names.
The UK market also seems to be on the agenda with the recent signing of David Price whose first Sauerland promoted show will be in Liverpool in the autumn. Judging by the fact that the family has very strong ties to the UK, do not expect this to be the last move in this direction.