British media company Flextech, the main shareholder in the Children’s Channel, is negotiating to take a substantial minority stake in the U.K. version of the Family Channel, which is due to launch this fall.

Intl. Family Entertainment, the Family Channel’s parent, is discussing the deal as part of a wider partnership between the two satellite TV services.

The Family Channel and the Children’s Channel will share a transponder on the third Astra direct-broadcast satellite, skedded to start operating this summer.

Both channels will be scrambled and sold as part of the new Astra mini-pay package of seven channels, also including BSkyB’s Sky One and Sky News, UK Nickelodeon, Discovery Europe and Bravo.

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