From David Del Valle in Madrid
Mediaset-controlled Tele 5, Spanish biggest private TV broadcaster, has signed an agreement with media company Prisa to take over commercial TV channel Cuatro and acquire a 22 per cent stake of digital DTH platform Digital Plus.
Tele 5 is paying E491 million to Prisa in cash for the Digital Plus stake and in exchange for Cuatro the channel will give Prisa new Tele 5 shares amounting to an 18.3 per cent stake after a capital increase of E500 million.
The deal is subject to the approval of Spain’s competition authorities. In terms of audience, Tele 5 is the second most widely watched TV channel pulling in an average share of 14.5 per cent in March, behind TVE, with 16.6 per cent, and ahead of Antena 3, with 12.2 per cent, Regional TV stations (Forta), with 12.7 per cent, La Sexta with 7.1 per cent and Cuatro, with 6.7 per cent.
With the agreement, Tele 5 and Cuatro will be able to operate up to 8 DTT channels, most of them pay TV as Prisa has plans to replicate a 'lite' version of Digital Plus on DTT to directly compete with the Mediapro-Abertis-backed DTT platform TDT Premium, with around 150,000 subscribers.