You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Kirch, CLT-Ufa merger meets resistance

EC may stop Premiere pay TV alliance

BERLIN — The European Commission may force media giants the Kirch Group and CLT-UFA to surrender their exclusive pay TV rights for Germany to competitors, European competition commissioner Karel van Miert said in an interview with German weekly Der Spiegel.

The EC will approve the planned pay TV alliance of Kirch and CLT-UFA only under certain conditions, the commissioner stressed. “We want to keep the access to the German pay TV market open. Others must have a real chance to offer pay TV in Germany,” Van Miert told the magazine. ” I cannot therefore imagine us allowing this merger without setting far-reaching conditions.”

Kirch and Bertelsmann-affiliated CLT-UFA currently “have more resources for sports programming and high-quality films than all other German TV companies combined,” Van Miert noted. For this reason, the EC is likely to demand that Kirch and CLT-UFA “hand over completely” all of their exclusive pay TV rights, or, at the very least, “license them to other companies under certain clearly-defined conditions.”

Van Miert said he “does not exclude the possibility” that the commission will veto the proposed merger altogether.

Bertelsmann and Kirch ended their prolonged battle for control of pay TV web Premiere last summer by agreeing to cooperate in developing the digital pay TV market in Germany. The EC’s investigation of the proposed merger recently entered a second phase, and may last until June.

More Biz

  • Disney-Fox Deal Casts Future of Fox

    Disney-Fox Deal Casts Future of Fox Studio Lot Into Doubt

    BERLIN — The European Commission may force media giants the Kirch Group and CLT-UFA to surrender their exclusive pay TV rights for Germany to competitors, European competition commissioner Karel van Miert said in an interview with German weekly Der Spiegel. The EC will approve the planned pay TV alliance of Kirch and CLT-UFA only under […]

  • Morgan Spurlock Sexual Misconduct

    Morgan Spurlock Steps Down From Production Company After Admitting to Sexual Misconduct

    BERLIN — The European Commission may force media giants the Kirch Group and CLT-UFA to surrender their exclusive pay TV rights for Germany to competitors, European competition commissioner Karel van Miert said in an interview with German weekly Der Spiegel. The EC will approve the planned pay TV alliance of Kirch and CLT-UFA only under […]

  • Consumer Watchdog Group Warns Against Disney-Fox

    Consumer Watchdog, Anti-Trust Experts Warn of Higher Prices From Disney-Fox Merger

    BERLIN — The European Commission may force media giants the Kirch Group and CLT-UFA to surrender their exclusive pay TV rights for Germany to competitors, European competition commissioner Karel van Miert said in an interview with German weekly Der Spiegel. The EC will approve the planned pay TV alliance of Kirch and CLT-UFA only under […]

  • Verve

    Verve Continues to Show Dominance in Spec Market Following Blacklist, Hitlist Unveilings

    BERLIN — The European Commission may force media giants the Kirch Group and CLT-UFA to surrender their exclusive pay TV rights for Germany to competitors, European competition commissioner Karel van Miert said in an interview with German weekly Der Spiegel. The EC will approve the planned pay TV alliance of Kirch and CLT-UFA only under […]

  • Sony's Tony Vinciquerra: Disney-Fox 'Creates Opportunities'

    Sony's Tony Vinciquerra: Disney-Fox 'Creates Opportunities'

    BERLIN — The European Commission may force media giants the Kirch Group and CLT-UFA to surrender their exclusive pay TV rights for Germany to competitors, European competition commissioner Karel van Miert said in an interview with German weekly Der Spiegel. The EC will approve the planned pay TV alliance of Kirch and CLT-UFA only under […]

  • What Disney Bought in the Fox

    What Disney Bought: A Billion-Dollar Breakdown of Assets

    BERLIN — The European Commission may force media giants the Kirch Group and CLT-UFA to surrender their exclusive pay TV rights for Germany to competitors, European competition commissioner Karel van Miert said in an interview with German weekly Der Spiegel. The EC will approve the planned pay TV alliance of Kirch and CLT-UFA only under […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content