Sogecable fined E44m for failure to supply rival

A Spanish court has ordered Sogecable to pay compensation of E43.94 million for its refusal to offer its premium channels to the cable operator Auna. The Madrid judge ruled Sogecable had been in breach of conract for its refusal to sell movie channel Gran Vía and Cable Sport to the cablenet in contravention of an arbitration by the regulator Comisión del Mercado de las Telecomunicaciones (CMT).

The CMT ruling had followed the merger of Sogecable's Digital+ satellite platform with that of its former rival Via Digital in 2002. The merged company had been obliged to make available premium content to its competitors such as Auna, which was subsequently acquired by ONO.

An agreement was reached in 2007, but after an initial acceptance by Auna, Sogecable looked to change the terms of the agreement including the imposition of minimum guarantees.

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