BSkyB deal for Kirch TV to be announced Friday

Investment to ensure financing for Premiere World

BERLIN — A deal between Rupert Murdoch’s British pay TV company BSkyB and Germany’s Kirch Group for a 25% piece in Kirch’s pay TV business will be signed Friday, according to daily Suddeutsche Zeitung.

BSkyB, of which Murdoch’s News Corp. owns 40%, plans to pay DM2 billion ($1.03 billion) in cash and shares for the stake in the KirchPayTV subsidiary, which runs Premiere World, Germany’s only pay TV platform.

Kirch officials had little to add to the story, saying there was nothing new to talk about. Last week, a company spokesman said Kirch was in negotiations with Murdoch and a deal was expected soon.

Official scrutiny

The German federal antitrust office already has been notified of the deal. Both it and the European Union competition authorities still may choose to review the agreement.

While regulatory approval of the planned deal is expected, there could be certain requirements regarding broadcasting rights to sports programming, such as soccer matches.

Premiere push

Murdoch’s investment in KirchPayTV will ensure financing for the future development of Premiere World.

KirchPayTV announced last week it had secured an additional $1.56 billion loan for the further expansion of its digital pay TV platform.

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