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Virgin Media eyes sports channel tie-up

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Sep 27, 2005
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#1
Reuters said:
Newly-formed Virgin Media is looking for partners to run a sports news channel on its cable service after it dropped Sky Sports News in a dispute with BSkyB, a source familiar with the matter said.

The source told Reuters on Thursday that it was an area of major interest and it would be looking for partners to provide the content. Rights to show Premier League soccer are currently held by BSkyB and Irish group Setanta.

Any tie-up between Virgin Media and another group could potentially result in the companies putting in a joint bid for content rights.

"They are looking at (a channel, and) I don't think Virgin Media is adverse to bidding for sporting rights with partners," the source said.

Virgin Media, which launched in February from the merger of NTL-Telewest and Virgin's mobile phone division, is looking to provide a stronger challenge to dominant pay-TV operator BSkyB.

BSkyB owns the rights to broadcast two-thirds of 138 live top-flight matches for the next three years, including the coveted "A" package of matches such as Manchester United against Arsenal, an offer which has proved hugely popular to viewers.

Setanta owns the remaining third.

The group which has Rupert Murdoch as its chairman withdrew its basic channels which included Sky Sports News, Sky News and Sky One from the Virgin Media platform at the start of this month following a dispute over carriage fees.

A second source told Reuters that Setanta was always looking to improve its offering to cable customers but that no deal was imminent.

Virgin Media combined in January with Setanta, Top Up TV and BT Group to complain to media regulator Ofcom over BSkyB, accusing it of suppressing competition within the industry.

Ofcom said on Tuesday it would investigate the pay-TV industry and consider whether to refer it to the Competition Commission.
Virgin are only going to blollocks everything up for everyone else & customers will start leaving in their droves, they're getting too big for their boots in my opinion, they're trying to change too much too soon & by this time next year they'll be left with nothing if the bickering with Sky continues.
 

southpaw83

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#2
Yeah, Virgin are getting too big for their boots. Challenging the inhibitive monopoly that is Sky TV.

I'm no big Branson fan, but I'm hopeful he can stand up to that arsehole Rupert Murdoch
 

Rat

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#3
on the other hand Branson (Virgin) are standing up to Sky (who think they own uk tv)
so some might say its a good thing ?
will make intresting reading though :)
 

Kenny2kk

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#5
I'm no big Branson fan, but I'm hopeful he can stand up to that arsehole Rupert Murdoch
same here, murdoch has had more than enough money of the english people for to long, should give branson a chance to earn a pound or two, but while murdoch holds the keys to the castle, he'll lock all the competitors out in the cold til his supplys dry up
 

Madagasca

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Nov 1, 2005
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#6
agreed - virgin will hopefully win the fight. Why should virgin pay an extra £50 million for the extra channels - TOTAL RIP OFF!

As if sky needed the money!
 

Kenny2kk

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#7
KEEP CABLE BRITISH - SCREW THE AUSSIES!

all the people who get cable (hacked or legit) should all be united in the front against the aussie, thiefing, trash talking scum - like Rupert Murdoch - and stick to virgin media.

they should jut get rid of sky sports news and use the internet or teletext & lost & 24 should just be download it to see how muck sky's revenue plummets!

Kenny2kk!
 

nj2006

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#8
Go Virgin Go Virgin Go ...................................

: whip : sky with your stick .

virgin is not new to dealing with these fatcats bet the people who say they are doing wrong were part of the same people who said virgin airlines wouldnt be around within a year. Now look at them

so virgin should replace the channels they lost last month. they should be looking for new broadcasters to partner with.
sky have had it to good for to long now and they better watch out because richard branson is about. LOL

and i totaly agree with whoever said keep uk tv british.

sorry but im a happy virgin customer they have the technolagy as far as any of the other supliers are concerned. sky will have to find some intresting ways to tempt me to switch. tell a lie all they would need to do is offer a lunix box that the custmer can alter and play with like the dbox2 or dreambox .