Spain’s two largest TV groups, Mediaset and Atresmedia, could face €5 billion compensation demands if the CNMC (Comisión Nacional de los Mercados y la Competencia) probe into their allegedly-illegal ad practices that distort the market finds that they are indeed guilty.
Regional public broadcasters and smaller DTT operators could ask for sky-high compensation of up to €5 billion for damages, according to El Español. Any local, regional or national TV channel could claim for damages as they would have lost ad revenues as a result of the illegal distortion in the TV market.
In 2017, Mediaset and Atresmedia controlled 94 per cent of the TV ad market, taking almost €2 billion in ad revenues, with a combined audience share of 55 per cent, according to Infoadex.
FORTA (Federación de Organismos de Radio y Televisión Autonómicos), the regional pubcasters’ Association and the smaller DTT channels have raised concerns over the last 12 months about the distortion in the TV ad market generated by Mediaset and Atresmedia with no proportion between the ad market share and the audience share. FORTA and the smaller DTT operators are demanding a more equal ad revenue distribution among all players, with an ad market share more similar to the audience share.
Since 2011, the duopoly has been controlling around 84 per cent of the TV ad pie, which increased to 94 per cent in 2017 – with total ad revenues reaching over €11 billion. They would have earned around €4.7 billion more than what they should have in comparison with their audience share. This is the sum lost by other players such as FORTA and smaller DTT channels such as Trece, DKiss, Veo TV, Net TV or Real Madrid TV, among others.