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Sportradar granted sublicence, will stop scouting in Genius-FDC settlement

| By Zak Thomas-Akoo
Sportradar’s legal dispute against Genius Sports and the Football DataCo (FDC) has reached a resolution, with the parties agreeing out of court that Sportradar will receive a sublicence for English football data, but that it must stop unofficial scouting.

Under the terms of the settlement, Sportradar will be granted a sublicence that will grant access to a delayed secondary feed until 2024. At the same time, Sportradar will cease its unauthorised in-stadium data collection activities.

The case, which dates back to February 2020, challenged the English and Scottish football data licensing regime. The framework was established in May 2019 when Genius signed a landmark agreement with FDC that granted the data business exclusive rights to collect, license and distribute live data from the Premier League, the Football League and the Scottish Professional Football League. The case was heard by the Competition Appeal Tribunal.

Sportradar claimed that the system that had been built through this partnership was in breach of UK and EU competition law. The stated decision to commence legal action leaned heavily on this theme, with Sportradar saying that it “hoped to find a fair solution that enables it to build its own database and to compete effectively in the market”.

One particular point of contention had been Genius and FDC’s unwillingness to grant Sportradar any access to the data: “Sportradar is, and has always been, willing to pay for access, and to be part of an integrated, accredited and fair system of collection and distribution which enables competition,” said Sportradar at the time the case began.

The official statement, signed off by all parties, outlined the public provisions of the deal:

“The litigation has been resolved to the satisfaction of the parties. The resolution enables FDC to maintain the right continue to license and market FDC data, as it determines,” it read.

“Genius Sports too shall maintain the right to provide low latency exclusive Official FDC betting data rights through 2024, and Sportradar, who has agreed to refrain from unauthorised in-stadia scouting of Premier League, Football League and Scottish Professional Football League matches, has purchased a sublicense from Genius Sports that provides rights to a delayed Official Secondary Feed through 2024.” 

“The remaining terms of the settlement are confidential.”

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