RTL back in the sports game


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CANNES -- A year and a half after selling its stake in pan-European sport agency Sportfive, European broadcast giant RTL Group is returning to the sports business.

RTL on Monday announced the re-launch of its defunct sports rights agency UFA Sports and named ex-Sportfive CEO Philip Cordes to run it.

Based in Hamburg, UFA Sports will handle sports rights marketing for the entire RTL Group, whose assets include channels RTL in Germany, M6 in France and Five in the UK.

UFA Sports was initially set up in 1988 and eventually merged to become a part of Sportfive. RTL eventually sold its remaining 25% stake in Sportfive to French conglomerate Lagardere in November 2006 in a deal that valued the agency at more than $1 billion.