France Médias formed to oversee PSB groups
September 25, 2019
From Pascale Paoli-Lebailly in Paris
French PSB groups France Télévisions, Radio France, France Medias Monde and INA are set to be overseen by a newly-created holding group, France Médias.
Arte France and TV5 Monde, which are owned by international shareholders, won’t be included, but will “participate in the new dynamics”. Youth and family channel France 4, as well as overseas territories service France Ô will go from linear TV to online first.
Outlining the audiovisual reform the French government is setting up for early 2020, minister of Culture France Riester said that in the public audiovisual sphere, France Médias would be run by a 12-member administration board, with one of them being named president, which would set out the global strategy. The new holding entity will rule over the financial means allocated to each broadcaster but won’t be in charge of programming and news. Each group will continue defining its editorial line.
France Médias aims to launch on January 1st 2021 but will embrace the financial guidance decided in 2018 that requires savings of €190 million across all PSB groups by 2022. The requested cost saving strategy is mainly hitting France Télévisions, which must find €160 million over four years.
Regarding France Télévisions’ executive management, the reform will oblige TV regulatory body CSA to name a transitional two-year president to replace Delphine Ernotte Cunci, whose tenure is set to expire in August 2021.
The restructuring aims to lead to one goal, according the minister, to “create a strong public audiovisual sector, able to assert its missions in terms of education, information, culture, proximity and foreign action”, as well as better to adapt itself to be new audience usages.
The reform also envisages merging the CSA’s anti-piracy arm Hadopi into a new and more powerful structure, branded Arcom.