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De Mol keeps soccer exclu

Media Authority rules in favor of Talpa

AMSTERDAM — Talpa Media Holding, Dutch media mogul John de Mol’s newest venture, will not have to sublease the soccer rights for which it paid a whopping E35 million ($42 million) to NOS, the sports and news arm of Dutch public broadcasting.

The pubcasters had asked the Media Authority to rule after claiming they must cover all major sporting events by law.

The watchdog said Tuesday that since Talpa’s programming block was free to air, the intent of the law was being met.

Talpa outbid the NOS by $12 million in December.

The rights, among the most coveted in the territory, had been held by the NOS for 40 years. They are also considered a major cornerstone of de Mol’s new broadcasting block, which will launch in August.

Ruling is the latest bad news for the pubcasters. Pols have been wrangling for several weeks over proposals to cut their channels from three to two.

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