Paris (AFP) – After months of hearing, the CSA has decided: LCI will become next year the 26th string free DTT and concurrent weight for BFM TV and iTV, but Paris Première and Planète + will pay .
recalibrated as LCI competitors immediately expressed their anger.
The CSA had refused twice free to LCI, TF1 subsidiary, in 2011 and 2014, but the audiovisual regulator decided this time to offer a new free information channel to the French. For him, LCI had no future in the pay and “the free access will contribute to pluralism.”
“The conditions have changed for LCI,” said AFP President of CSA Olivier Schrameck. “The need for information is greater than ever.”
In 2014, the CSA had blocked the road to LCI, believing that advertising revenues were insufficient to another news channel, alongside BFM TV and iTV.
Since then, the situation has changed, according to the CSA. BFM TV and iTV are now both backed by large groups, Altice and Vivendi, which reinforce the
In addition, Delphine Ernotte, the new president of France Télévisions. – Chosen by the CSA – wants to launch a chain Public info from 2016. This made it difficult for the CSA to repeat not LCI, analysts said.
At the headquarters of TF1, the regulator’s decision triggered an explosion of joy was celebrated champagne. Hitherto threatened by a social level, 230 employees LCI, pioneer of information continuously enter a new era.
The TF1 group, which wants to LCI a “chain-driven on digital “, will invest 20 million euros in this chain, deficit since its inception in June 1994. But it is a return to profit in 2019
-. Wrath of dropouts –
According to sources, the chain free pass early 2016. It was chosen Thursday a new director. Nicolas Charbonneau, hitherto deputy managing editor of TF1
To obtain the agreement of the CSA, LCI has promised to stand out from other information channels with more magazines and reports, and less than JT. Come asked the Competition Authority, she also promised to give up for at least 2 years in any promotion on LCI and TF1 bundled advertising offerings.
The CSA in however refused free passage to Paris Première, cultural channel M6 Group and Planète + (Canal +), documentary channel created in 1988. Both had been retoquées repeatedly by the regulator. They “found their way on pay DTT” assured Olivier Schrameck.
The CSA’s decision therefore affects both Canal +, TF1 and M6, the three largest private groups in the French media , vying stagnant advertising revenues and audiences increasingly attracted to the Internet.
LCI recalibrated as competitors immediately expressed their anger. NextRadioTV, parent BFMTV, first French news channel, even accused the CSA of having yielded to “outside pressure” and endanger BFMTV and iTV.
The CSA “chose strengthen a dominant player in history to the detriment of new entrants and interest for the viewer, “ruled the group of Alain Weill, who had threatened to make” hundreds “of layoffs happening in BFMTV if LCI free. It has already warned it was considering an appeal against the decision of the CSA.
“France is the country with the world more free news channels,” lamented for his part Canal +, owner of iTV but also Planète +. “The viability of all channels is threatened”.
iTV, which on average lost 15 million euros annually, could lose 25 due to competition from LCI, according its leaders.
As for Paris First, she believes “endangerment” and is expected to become a deficit from 2017. M6 also plans an appeal before the State Council.