By Gary Anderson

July 16 - rai-radiotelevisione-italiana-370x229Italian state broadcaster Radiotelevisione Italiana (RAI) has reached an agreement with satellite firm Sky Italia to sub-licence broadcast rights to the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics and the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

The deal, estimated to be worth between €60 million (£52 million/$79 million) and $100 million (£87 million/$131 million), will see RAI broadcasting daily highlights from Sochi 2014 and sharing live rights with Sky Italia for Rio 2016.

Sky Italia has exclusive live rights to Sochi 2014, but under International Olympic Committee (IOC) rules it is obliged to provide free-to-air coverage to a partner.

RAI has been the long-term broadcaster of the Olympic Games in Italy and was one of the founding members of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) in 1950, which comprises of various public service media organisations from across Europe.

RAI had the broadcast rights to the 2006 Winter Games in Turin and the Beijing Games in 2008, but in a separate deal agreed with the IOC in February 2008, Sky Italia was awarded the rights to Vancouver 2010 and the 2012 London Olympics.

However, following negotiations between the two broadcasters, it was announced in September 2008 that RAI had bought the broadcast rights for Vancouver 2010 and London 2012 from Sky Italia.

As part of the deal, Sky Italia secured the rights to the FIFA World Cups in 2010 and 2014.

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