German court nixes suit vs. SAT 1

Media mogul Leo Kirch has won a major round against media authorities trying to limit his broadcasting power.

A Dusseldorf court Friday overturned a suit lodged by the Nordrhein-Westfalen media regulatory bureau (LfR) that threatened to throw private web SAT 1 off that state’s terrestrial frequencies.

Nordrhein-Westfalen is Germany’s most densely populated area, with 4 million viewers.

The LfR, in an antitrust suit, said it would block SAT 1 from airing in the region if Kirch and the Axel Springer Verlag did not divest their holdings in the web to below 50%. Because Kirch is a major shareholder in Springer, there were questions as to how much influence Kirch himself held over SAT 1, and other stations.

Another Kirch/Springer-backed station, sport niche web DSF, is facing its own antitrust action in Berlin and Brandenburg, where the station is blocked from the airwaves. According to a SAT 1 statement, the Dusseldorf decision bodes well for an outcome favorable to that web.

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Biz News from Variety