Basketball England has claimed it will not be putting the British Basketball League licence out to tender in an apparent revision of its original terms.

Despite initially stating las week that its option would be “including but not limited to a competitive tender process”, the governing body has taken a more conciliatory tone, claiming that its re-visit of the professional structure is driven by investment opportunities and a desire to look to the future.

“The licence to operate a professional league expires later this year, and it is prudent to review whether there are opportunities to take the sport to a higher level, after approaches by financially strong entities, whose investment proposition would benefit the elite teams, the professional league, the women’s game and the whole of our grass roots basketball market,” BE said in a statement.

“To achieve this a Licence Review Committee has been appointed, and its recommendations will drive decisions on awarding the licence to operate the professional league.”

MVP has learnt that the review panel will now include three independent analysts in addition to current BE board members Mark Clark and Jeff Jones, with a mandate to begin discussions this week. While no precise timetable has been set, a target has been set to finish the information-gathering process by the close of February.

A report, with recommendations, would then be presented, not only to Basketball England’s board but also that of the British Basketball Federation, who are due to inherit control over the licence from 2016 onwards.

More on the BBL review in Tuesday’s BBL Insider column on MVP.



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