UAAP talking with TV5, one other network?

Published August 20, 2020, 3:16 PM

by Kristel Satumbaga-Villar

The UAAP will resume its negotiations with broadcast partner ABS-CBN despite the House’s decision to junk the franchise bid of the media giant. (MB Photo / Jansen Romero)

The UAAP is now starting to test the waters as to its next broadcast partner after its contract with ABS-CBN expired last May.

An insider disclosed that the UAAP talked with a couple of broadcasting companies on Thursday without naming the networks involved.

It was reported that TV5, which has refocused on strengthening its sports brand by recently acquiring the rights to air the NBA on local shores, has shown great interest in luring the UAAP to its fold.

READ: ABS-CBN franchise bid junked

Securing the rights to broadcast the immensely popular UAAP would further expand its clout in Philippine sports.

ABS-CBN Sports, which was shut down after its mother company, ABS-CBN, failed to secure the franchise to air on its free channels, had started to shed off its old programming, among them the Premier Volleyball League and the NCAA.

READ: ABS-CBN sports division part of network’s retrenchment program

In fact, the station had recently sought to discontinue its 10-year contract with the NCAA while allowing the Premier Volleyball League (PVL) to find a new TV home.

Other TV corporations that may be bidding for the UAAP rights could be GMA7 or CNN Philippines, which had already reportedly sent feelers to the NCAA last week.

Government-owned PTV4 may be potentially in the discussion after it had shown interest in the PVL.

UAAP has kept mum on the issue although league executive director Rebo Saguisag said the league is not closing doors “on considering other parties, if necessary.”

“We commiserate with our long-time partner, but this is ultimately a business decision that the Board will have to make using their best judgment,” said Saguisag on the aftermath of ABS-CBN Sports’ closure last month.

READ: UAAP to evaluate broadcast partnership with ABS-CBN