BBC Worldwide (BBCWW) will retain finished programme and format rights to the Great British Bake Off for a further 12 years despite the show’s shift from the BBC to rival Channel 4.
C4 nabbed rights to the ratings smasher earlier this week after the BBC lost the contract to air the show following disagreements over price with UK-based Love Productions.
The bakery format, sold globally excluding the US by BBCWW, has become one of the BBC’s key shows over recent years and the debut of its seventh season that started last month attracted more than 10 million viewers.
It is also a global hit, with the UK version selling to the US and the format being remade in almost 30 countries, including Poland in July.
Doubts over its future at BBCWW had been raised, not least because Love is 70% owned by Sky which has its own sales arm Sky Vision, but the commercial arm of the BBC has confirmed there are no plans to sell its sales rights.
“BBC Worldwide continues to hold international format rights (excluding North America) for Bake Off for the next 12 years,” a spokesman told C21.
“BBC Worldwide additionally has an exclusive first negotiation position with Love Productions for the international distribution of future seasons of The Great British Bake Off.”
The future of the show on BBC1 had been in doubt for some time with Love Productions and the pubcaster in talks over its future for almost 12 months.
On Monday night it emerged those talks had failed and Love then revealed it had agreed a three-year deal with rival broadcaster C4, which will start its tenure by airing a celebrity version of Bake Off in 2017.
It is not yet clear whether the UK show’s judges Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry will be moving to C4 but the BBC’s hosts Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc have confirmed they will not be on the new version.
The show started life on BBC2 before being promoted to flagship BBC1 in 2014. A junior version has also been launched on kids channel CBBC and the format has sold around the world.