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CEE TV industry news stories

Chris Dziadul, January 2, 2024

Orange consolidates in Romania

Orange has signed an agreement with Romania’s Ministry of Research, Innovation and Digitalisation (MCID) to merge Orange Romania with Orange Romania Communications. This follows Orange’s acquisition of a 54% stake in the latter, which was formerly known as Telekom Romania Communications, in September 2021. Under the terms of the agreement, Orange will hold 80% of the share capital and voting rights of the new entity, with MRID holding the remaining 20% of each. Both parties hope the agreement, which is expected to be concluded in the first half of 2024, will lead to the creation of the leading provider of converged services in Romania.

Turmoil at TVP continues

Poland’s Culture Minister Bartlomiej Sienkiewicz has said he will put the public broadcaster TVP into liquidation. This comes after the bizarre situation TVP found itself in the last few weeks by being headed by several presidents. Following the appointment of Tomasz Sygut by the new coalition government and dismissal of the incumbent Mateusz Matyszkowicz, the broadcaster’s Supervisory Board, which had also been dismissed, appointed Maciej Lopinski as the new president. Following on from this, the National Media Council reportedly chose Michal Adamczyk for the role. These developments signal the latest stage of a confrontation between the new government and Law and Justice (PiS), which was in power up until a general election in October in which it failed to secure a majority.


Turkcell sells Ukrainian subsidiaries

The Turkish operator Turkcell has agreed to sell its subsidiaries in Ukraine to NJJ Capital for an undisclosed fee. The subsidiaries include Lifecell, Global Bilgi and Ukrtower. Elsewhere in Central and Eastern Europe, Turkcell also has interests in Belarus.


Czech Republic and Slovakia gains new sports channels

Two new sports channels named Canal+ Sport 2 and Premier Sport 3 have made their debuts in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

Canal+ Sport 2 is being offered by Canal+-owned M7 Group to customers of Skylink Live TV and the Canal+ streaming platform. It is initially providing coverage of the WTA women’s tennis tournament. Meanwhile, Premier Sport 3 is produced by O2 TV and has replaced the channel O2 TV Tenis. It is being distributed on the IPTV and OTT services of O2 TV and Telly.  


Major production deal in Ukraine

Ukraine’s 1+1 Media and FILM.UA Group have concluded a large-scale agreement for the joint production of more than 200 hours of TV series and two feature films in 2024. Unprecedented for the Ukrainian market, they will jointly invest in content and join forces for the distribution and monetisation of products. The agreement follows on from a memorandum for the joint production of content signed by the two parties at the beginning of 2023.


Gazprom-Media grows streaming service

The streaming service Premier operated by Russia’s Gazprom-Media ended 2023 with 4.8 million paying subscribers. This, according to the company, was 33% more than at the end of 2022.


M7 to distribute new RTL Hungary channels

Canal+’s M7 Group has extended its long-standing partnership with CLT-UFA HBD for the satellite distribution of four new TV channels operated by RTL Hungary. Kölyökklub (Kid’s Club), Moziklub (Cinema Club), Sorozatklub (Serial Club) and RTL OTTHON (RTL Home) are now distributed by THOR 7 at 1 degree West to both Direct One subscribers and third party operators.


New Samsung TV milestone in Poland

Samsung says it has passed the “magical figure” of 3.5 million smart TVs in Poland. According to internal research, there were 3,378,874 active Samsung Smart TVs in November 2022, with the total rising to almost 3,600,000 a year later. This represented a rise of over 6% in barely four quarters,


New ownership for Prague Digital TV

The Czech national transmission company CRA bought Prague Digital from Pavel Fromberger and Mediapoli Group. The latter previously held 66.5% and 33.5% shares respectively in Prague Digital TV, which operates a regional DVB-T2 multiplex covering Prague and Central Bohemia.


More foreign channels for Ukraine

The Ukrainian regulator National Council has added two more foreign linear TV channels to the list of those allowed to be distributed in the country. Sport 3, the rights to which are held by MRIYA MEDIA PRODUCTIONS LLC, and religious-based Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN), will both be offered to viewers in Ukrainian and English. Sport 3 is also licensed in the Baltic countries and Moldova and EWTN in Poland, Germany, Hungary and I hasreland.


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© Chris Dziadul, 2024

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