ITV3 looking to September launch.

N

net1

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#1
ITV has pencilled in a September launch date for its new drama and golden oldies channel, ITV3, provided negotiations with BSkyB are successfully concluded.
Executives from the broadcaster are understood to have been locked in intensive talks with BSkyB in recent days to pave the way for the launch of ITV3, by restructuring the two companies' GSkyB pay-TV joint venture.

GSkyB, which operates the Granada Plus entertainment channel and Men and Motors, has a first-look deal with ITV for classic Granada dramas such as Cracker, Cold Feet, Prime Suspect and Brideshead Revisited, and launching ITV3 without access to these shows would be unthinkable.

ITV's chief executive, Charles Allen, is faced with a tricky strategic choice in the negotiations with BSkyB over ITV3.

Mr Allen can launch ITV3 as a pay-TV channel, replacing Granada Plus on Sky Digital and digital cable.

TV industry pundits believe ITV3 would earn as much as £7m-10m a year in distribution fees from Sky Digital and the cable operators if it is launched as a pay-TV channel.

However, BSkyB is thought to be asking for an equity stake in ITV3 if it becomes a pay-TV service as a result of the GSkyB talks.

Alternatively, Mr Allen could launch ITV3 as a free-to-air channel like ITV1 and 2, relying solely on advertising income.
 

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#2
net1 said:
...Alternatively, Mr Allen could launch ITV3 as a free-to-air channel like ITV1 and 2, relying solely on advertising income.
He could, but first of all he would need to take ITV2 out of whatever Sky package it starts to become available in and make it free to view, or better still, free to air.
 
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