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Rogers Communications and NHL Announce 12-Year National Broadcast and Multimedia Agreement

November 26, 2013

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– Adds value to fans with more games, more content, more choice and more
flexibility –

– Positions Sportsnet to become Canada’s #1 sports media brand –

– Bolsters Rogers’ sports offerings and leadership across all platforms

TORONTO, Nov. 26, 2013 /CNW/ – Rogers Communications and the National
Hockey League today announced a landmark 12-year broadcast and
multimedia agreement that includes all national rights to NHL games on
all platforms in all languages.  The agreement, the largest media
rights deal in League history, begins with the 2014-15 season and
continues through the 2025-26 season.  This marks the first time a
premium North American-wide sports league has granted all of its
national (Canadian) rights to one company on a long-term basis.

Rogers also announced today it has selected CBC and TVA for separate
sub-licensing deals for English-language broadcasts of Hockey Night in Canada and all national French-language multimedia rights, respectively.

The agreement is subject to approval by the NHL’s Board of Governors at
its meeting on December 9-10.

“Sports content is a key strategic asset and we’ve been investing
significantly to strengthen our sports offering to Canadians,” said
Nadir Mohamed, President and Chief Executive Officer, Rogers
Communications.  “Canadians are passionate about hockey, and through
this landmark partnership with the NHL we’ll be able to bring hockey
fans more games and more content on their platform of choice.”

“Our fans always want to explore deeper and more emotional connections
to NHL hockey, and that is precisely what Rogers has promised to
deliver over the next 12 years – channeling the reach of its platforms
and the intensity of its passion for the game into an unparalleled
viewing experience,” said NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman.”The NHL is
extremely excited about the power and potential of this groundbreaking
partnership.”

Canadians will receive more NHL games than ever before through Rogers’
wireless and cable assets, promotional vehicles, and diverse media
assets – including City and all Sportsnet platforms. Highlights of the
agreement include:

  • National rights across TV broadcasts, TV Everywhere, wireless and mobile
    tablets, Internet streaming, terrestrial and satellite radio, and
    out-of-home;
  • National rights to all regular season games, all playoff games and the
    Stanley Cup Final, and all special events and non-game events (i.e. NHL
    All-Star Game, NHL Draft) – in all languages;
  • Out-of-market rights for all regional games;
  • Ownership of all linear and digital highlights, including condensed
    games and video archives;
  • NHL broadcast assets: Rogers to operate NHL Centre Ice and NHL Game Centre Live;
  • Sponsorship rights to the NHL Shield logo as an official partner of the
    NHL; and
  • Canadian representation of ad sales for NHL.com.

“Our vision is to build on the NHL’s legacy in Canada with an emphasis
on storytelling, innovation, and technology — weaving the NHL, its
teams and its stars even deeper into the fabric of Canadian culture,”
said Keith Pelley, President, Rogers Media.  “Today’s announcement
significantly increases the value of our premium Sportsnet brand and
reinforces our commitment to making Sportsnet the #1 sports media brand
in Canada.”

Rogers will provide multiple game coverage on up to nine TV channels
plus digital and radio on any given night (see “Sample Saturday Night”
addendum).  Expanded pre- and post-game coverage, behind-the-scenes
access, profiles of the league’s Top 50 stars, first-to-market
production technology, a state-of-the-art high-tech studio, and a
Hockey Production Centre of Excellence will give Canadians a new way to
experience the NHL like never before (see “Programming & Production
Philosophy” addendum).

Today’s announcement strengthens Rogers’ sports leadership in Canada and
complements the company’s existing NHL alliances.  Sportsnet is the
regional broadcaster of the Calgary Flames, Edmonton Oilers, Ottawa
Senators, Toronto Maple Leafs, and Vancouver Canucks, producing and
airing 264 regional games per year (see “Fact Sheet” addendum).  Rogers
has a 37.5% equity stake in Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment, 100%
ownership of the Toronto Blue Jays and Rogers Centre stadium, strategic
partnerships with the Vancouver Canucks and Edmonton Oilers, and
long-term media agreements with the NHL, MLB, NFL, NBA, MLS, NCAA,
Rogers Cup, UFC, international soccer, and more.

This agreement is net present value positive for Rogers’ shareholders –
it is expected to be accretive to Rogers Media operating profit from
the outset and significantly, will yield additional benefits to the
cable and wireless operations. The financial terms comprise annual
payments commencing at just over $300 million in the first year, with
gradual annual escalations, increasing to approximately mid-$500
million
in the final year of the contract term. These payments,
together with an upfront payment amount of $150 million spread over the
first two years of the contract, will amount to $5.2 billion in total
payments to the NHL over the 12-year term. The annual rights costs will
be offset by consideration received under the CBC and TVA sub-licenses
referenced above.

Caution Regarding Forward-Looking Statements, Risks and Assumptions:
This release includes “forward-looking information” within the meaning
of applicable securities laws and assumptions concerning the closing of
an acquisition as detailed above. We caution that all forward-looking
information is inherently subject to change and uncertainty and that
actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by
the forward-looking information. A number of risks, uncertainties and
other factors could cause actual results and events to differ
materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking
information or could cause our current objectives, strategies and
intentions to change, including but not limited to approvals by the
NHL’s Board of Governors. Many of these factors are beyond our control
and current expectation or knowledge. Should one or more of these
risks, uncertainties or other factors materialize, our objectives,
strategies or intentions change, or any other factors or assumptions
underlying the forward-looking information prove incorrect, our actual
results and our plans could vary significantly from what we currently
foresee. Accordingly, we warn investors to exercise caution when
considering statements containing forward-looking information and that
it would be unreasonable to rely on such statements as creating legal
rights regarding our future results or plans. We are under no
obligation (and we expressly disclaim any such obligation) to update or
alter any statements containing forward-looking information, the
factors or assumptions underlying them, whether as a result of new
information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law. All
of the forward-looking information in this release is qualified by the
cautionary statements herein.

About the NHL:
The National Hockey League®, founded in 1917, is the second-oldest of
the four major professional team sports leagues in North America
Today, the NHL® consists of 30 Member Clubs, each reflecting the
League’s international makeup, with players from more than 20 countries
represented on team rosters. According to a Simmons Market Research
study, NHL fans are younger, more educated, more affluent, and access
content through digital means more than any other major professional
sport. The NHL entertains more than 250 million fans each season
in-arena and through its partners in national television (NBC Sports
Network, NBC, TSN, CBC, RDS, and NHL Network™) and radio (NHL Radio™,
Sirius XM Satellite Radio).  Through the NHL Foundation, the League’s
charitable arm, the NHL raises money and awareness for Hockey Fights
Cancer™ and NHL Youth Development, and supports the charitable efforts
of NHL players. For more information on the NHL, log on to NHL.com.

About Rogers:
Rogers is a leading diversified Canadian communications and media
company.  We are Canada’s largest provider of wireless voice and data
communications services and one of Canada’s leading providers of cable
television, high-speed Internet and telephony services.  Through Rogers
Media we are engaged in radio and television broadcasting, televised
shopping, magazines and trade publications, and sports entertainment. 
We are publicly traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX:  RCI.A and
RCI.B) and on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: RCI).

SOURCE Rogers Communications Inc.

Image with caption: “Nadir Mohamed, President and CEO, Rogers Communications and Gary Bettman, NHL Commissioner, announce landmark 12-year national broadcast and multimedia agreement at Rogers headquarters in Toronto. (CNW Group/Rogers Communications Inc.)”. Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20131126_C4924_PHOTO_EN_33872.jpg

PDF available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/media/2013/11/26/20131126_C4924_DOC_EN_33833.pdf

PDF available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/media/2013/11/26/20131126_C4924_DOC_EN_33834.pdf