Sports media rights – new distribution methods and competition law - Panel discussion at Sports law Ireland Conference 2019

Sports Media Rights Panel Speakers at Sports Law Ireland 19

LawInSport in partnership with the Sports Law Bar Association of Ireland will be hosting a one-day conference in Dublin on the 8 February 2019 to contemporary issues in sports law and celebrate the contribution of Irish Sports Lawyers and Sports Business Professionals contribution to the development of international sports governance, regulation and law.

To discuss new distribution methods and competition law in sports media rights, we have brought together leading experts to debate the issue.

The speakers on the Sports Media Rights panel are:

  • Louise Reilly, Barrister (Panel Chair)
  • Benoit Keane, Solicitor/Avocat ,Keane Legal
  • Ian Lynam, Partner, Northridge
  • Lynsey Mulvihill, Senior Legal Counsel, World Rugby
  • Alex Slade, VP Legal, EMEA, ELEVEN SPORTS

The conference will also offer unrivaled networking opportunity with the leading experts, lawyers and executives in the sports sector as well as 4 interactive panel discussions.

For further information including the full agenda and speaker list, and details of how to book your place click here:

You can follow updates from the conference on Twitter using #SportsLawIre19

 Speaker Profiles

Louise Reilly, Barrister

Louise Reilly is a barrister who specialises in sports law and international arbitration. Louise also sits as arbitrator. She is the Irish alternate member of the ICC International Court of Arbitration in Paris, and a member of the Panel of Arbitrators and Mediators of Sport Resolutions, UK. Louise is a former Managing Counsel and Head of Mediation at the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne.


Benoit Keane, Solicitor/Avocat ,Keane Legal

Benoît Keane is qualified as a Solicitor (England & Wales) and Avocat (Barreau de Bruxelles).  He is an experienced adviser on a range of European legal matters to companies, sports organisations, trade associations, public authorities, and media bodies. He regularly acts in cases before the European Commission and the European Courts. Chambers Europe 2017 has recommended Benoît as a leading lawyer in Competition/European law.

Benoît is based in Brussels and works with clients and law firms across Europe.  Before starting his own practice, Benoît worked for a number of international law firms in Brussels, London and Paris. Clients receive, therefore, the professional service of a dedicated and internationally experienced advocate.  

European sports law and European media law

Benoît is recognised as an “expert” in European sports law by the directory Who’s Who Legal and was ranked “Most Highly Regarded” in 2015.  He has acted in many of the leading cases of the last decade on a range of matters relating to both the regulatory and commercial aspects of sport.  He has also appeared as an expert witness on EU law before the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Drawing on this experience, he advises on European sports law issues and, in particular, the application of European free movement and competition law to the regulatory rules of sports organisations as well as their commercial activities.

Benoît has also developed an expertise in European media law.  He advises media organisations on the application of European media law, IP law and competition law to their activities.

Professional Background

Benoît, who comes from Ireland, read law at University College Cork. He obtained a master’s degree in European law at the College of Europe in Bruges.  He worked in London and Paris for an international law firm before moving to Brussels in 2003 to undertake a stage in the European Commission (DG Competition).  He qualified as a Solicitor of England & Wales in 2003.  He then practised as a lawyer for a number of international law firms in Brussels before establishing his own practice in 2012.  He became an Avocat of the Barreau de Bruxelles in 2017.

Benoît regularly writes and speaks on developments in European law and policy.  He is a trustee of the Institute of International & European Affairs (Brussels) AISBL having previously served as Chair from 2007 to 2009.  He is the European law contributor to Sports Law Administration and Practiceand a member of the Editorial Board of the competition law journal World Competition.

Ian Lynam, Partner, Northridge

Ian is a partner at Northridge.

Ian advises governing bodies, clubs, athletes, sponsors and agencies in sports including football, rugby, athletics, cricket, tennis, golf, cycling, motor sports, horse-racing, greyhound-racing, polo and mixed martial arts.

He advises on financial regulation (including salary caps and financial fair play), sponsorship and other commercial agreements, player transfers, third party ownership, image rights, player contracts, governance, rules and regulations, financing, and M&A in sport.

Ian is a contributor to the leading sports law text: "Sport: Law and Practice", and often contributes to legal journals and the media on sports law issues. He regularly speaks at conferences and lectures on the BASL/DMU Post-Graduate Diploma in Sports Law and University College Dublin's Masters in Sports Management. Ian is admitted to practice in England & Wales, Ireland and New York.

Lynsey Mulvihill, Senior Legal Counsel, World Rugby

Lynsey joined World Rugby, the world governing body of Rugby Union, in 2016. World Rugby organises various tournaments including Rugby World Cup, Women's Rugby World Cup and Rugby World Cup Sevens. In her role as Senior Legal Counsel, Lynsey advises on a broad range of commercial and intellectual property matters with a particular focus on the distribution of media rights, sponsorship arrangements, merchandising and brand management for the commercial programmes of World Rugby’s various tournaments.

Prior to joining World Rugby, Lynsey worked in private practice in A&L Goodbody before moving to an inhouse role. Lynsey is admitted to practice in Ireland, England and Wales and New York.


Alex Slade is VP Legal, EMEA at Aser Media, the owner of the Eleven Sports Network. Alex covers all areas of the business but his primary focus is the Eleven Sports channels and offerings in EMEA and the US. That work encompasses rights acquisition, licensing, distribution and carriage of sports rights for the Eleven Sports Network.

In addition, he is also an Independent Non-Executive Director of the British Judo Association.

Prior to Eleven Sports he worked for BT Sport as Head of Legal, Sport having joined just before the launch of the channels and before that for he worked in kids TV at Nickelodeon. Outside interests include cycling and sailing - Alex spent a year out competing in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race in 2005-06. Alex lives with his wife and three daughters in Suffolk.



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