Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is mulling the sale of its two Italian free-to-air channels Cine Sony and Pop, according to local daily Il Sole 24 Ore.
A decision is expected in January or February and the potential buyers include Mediaset, Discovery and Viacom. The latter is seen as the favourite, as it is already responsible for the advertising sales for both channels.
However, other outcomes such as partnerships and joint ventures cannot be ruled out. The continuation of the activity also cannot be excluded, although Sony is not satisfied with the performance of the two channels, which have an overall audience share of 0.49 per cent. SPE acquired the two national DTT channel positions (45 and 55) from Italian broadcaster TBS in March 2017.
Meanwhile, Studio Universal has stopped broadcasting in Italy after 20 years. The channel was distributed via the Mediaset Premium DTT pay-TV platform.
Additionally, rival pay-TV broadcaster Sky Italia has ceased distribution of two music TV channels – Radio Capital TV and m20 TV.