×

Altice’s Patrick Drahi Vows to Bring i24 News, French-Language Channels to U.S.

PARIS — Patrick Drahi, the French-Israeli tycoon behind Altice, the new parent company of Cablevision and the U.S.’s fourth biggest telecommunications operator, told the AFP that Altice will be launching its news channel i24 News in the U.S. within a year.

Launched in 2013 and headquartered in Israel, i24 News would fill the void left by Al Jazeera America, which folded in January after bowing three years ago in the States.

“The French version (of i24 News) is mainly focused on the Middle East and France. The U.K. version is about the Middle East. The American version will be about the Middle East and the United States,” Drahi told the AFP.

The businessman, who is the founder and controlling shareholder of Altice, added, “I want i24 News to show both sides: The man who’s in Gaza as much as the man who’s in Tel Aviv. I want the French to hear the opinion of Americans. I want the New Yorkers to hear the opinion of the French and all that will enable people to engage in discussions, have a different vision than the one perpetuated by others (alluding to Al Jazeera America) who have indeed not succeeded.” Altice is expected to staff the American version of i24 News with U.S. and French journalists.

Drahi also said he intended on rolling out a slew of French-language channels, including the group’s French news channel BFMTV, in the U.S.

Another item on Altice’s agenda is to develop and produce original French drama series as part of its strategy to invest in premium content. In February, the company appointed Nora Melhli, formerly head of drama at Shine France and CEO of Endemol Fiction, to spearhead original creation and non-linear content, including Zive, its new SVOD platform.

Altice announced on Tuesday the completion of its $17.7 billion acquisition of Cablevision and the subsequent formation of Altice USA, the fourth-largest operator in the country, which combines Cablevision and Suddenlink.

Upon unveiling the deal, Drahi said Altice USA was “a key pillar of (the group’s) business and a powerful and dynamic growth platform,” adding that Altice will “accelerate network investments and bring innovative products and services to U.S.”

More TV

  • Vincent Marzello Obit Dead

    'The Witches' Star Vincent Marzello Dies at 68

    Actor Vincent Marzello, best known for his roles in “The Witches,” “Superman” and “The Spy Who Loved Me,” died on Tuesday. He was 68. Marzello’s wife, “Notting Hill” actor Lorelei King, tweeted the news. “The love of my life, my darling husband Vincent Marzello, died this morning,” she wrote. “To those who knew him, I [...]

  • Shrill TV Show

    'Shrill' Renewed for Season 3 at Hulu (EXCLUSIVE)

    “Shrill” has been renewed for a third season at Hulu, Variety has learned. The third season will consist of eight episodes. The first season of the series was just six episodes while the second was also eight. The news comes just over two months after the launch of Season 2 on the streamer. The comedy series [...]

  • NO-MANS-LAND

    Amit Cohen, Ron Leshem Talk Fremantle Banner Title ‘No Man’s Land’

    One of the major buzz titles over the last seven days’ Series Mania/MipTV virtual marketplace, “No Man’s Land” starts in Paris, as Antoine, a construction engineer corroded by guilt at his sister’s death in a terrorist attack, thinks he glimpses her in TV footage of the Kurdish YPG militia. Minutes later in series terms, he [...]

  • Helen Hunt World on Fire

    What's in a Name? How U.S. Talent Buoys International Sales on European Drama

    While European actors have long been mainstays on American television, recent years have seen American stars gaining traction as the leads in international productions. Sandra Oh’s award-winning turn in “Killing Eve,” Carrie Anne Moss in “Wisting,” Anna Paquin in “Flack” and Rob Lowe in “Wild Bill” are just a few examples of familiar Hollywood faces [...]

  • BBC Kids

    Netflix, Nickelodeon Dominate Kids' Originals But BBC Is Strong Second

    U.S. giants Netflix and Nickelodeon are the world’s leading providers of children’s shows, more or less on a par. But the BBC’s kids’ brand CBBC ranks second and is also much more balanced in terms of its output of kids’ originals. Rankings and breakdown of product type were among the takeaways of the Fresh TV [...]

  • U.K. Freelancers

    U.K. Government Faces Pressure From Industry on Economic Measures for Freelancers

    The U.K. government is facing increasing pressure from the creative industries after it emerged that economic measures set out for the self-employed last week by Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak have yawning gaps in them. The measures may have come as a welcome move for many creative industries workers, but not all are eligible [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content