Time Warner in trio seeking U.K. Ch. 5

LONDON — Media groups Pearson, Time Warner Inc. and MAI Plc have formed a consortium ready to bid to operate a fifth national television channel in the U.K. if a franchise is offered, London’s Financial Times reported.

The paper said the Independent Television Commission is expected to decide shortly on whether it will re-offer a Channel 5 license, having rejected the only bid it received last time around, in December 1992.

That bid was put together by Time Warner, Pearson and television production company Thames Television.

Pearson, which publishes the Financial Times, has since taken over Thames. Labor peer Lord Hollick’s MAI Plc controls regional television company Meridian and is making an agreed bid for a second, Anglia Television Group Plc.

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