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Canal+: “It can be fixed” says Bolloré

Vivendi boss Vincent Bolloré has given a very rare interview to French business newspaper Les Echos, and makes it clear that the Canal Plus premium channel can be saved and was a priority for Vivendi. He said: “Canal Plus will be fixed provided our current agreement with (beIN Sport) is accepted and efficiency measures (within the channel and Group) are implemented.”

According to equity analysts at Exane/BNP-Paribas, he then amplified his views, saying: “Canal went through a reckoning phase last year, then a new team was put in place, and we know which direction to take. It will be a long term process, but the worst is behind.”

Bolloré then listed his objectives, saying:

  • investment in original content;
  • better segmentation with lower entry price points and more premium offers;
  • simplification of complex offering;
  • cooperation with beIN Sport;
  • cost efficiencies;
  • Less free available content (a unique feature of Canal, not found anywhere else in the world) to make the pay offer more attractive. For instance Canal could start broadcasting a soccer game for free and then move it to the pay window. other existing content on the free window of Canal+ could be transferred to the FTA channels.

Bolloré confirmed last week’s report that news channel  i>Télé is not for sale.

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