- French broadcasters offer concessions to win Salto approval
- Salto is a joint SVOD project by France Televisions, M6 and TF1
- Commitments include 40% limit on exclusive content
French broadcasters looking to launch a joint subscription video-on-demand project have offered significant concessions to secure approval from the country’s competitions regulator, according to reports.
Les Echos claims to have seen a confidential document that lays out around 20 commitments made to the Autorité de la Concurrence in a bid to secure the green light for the launch of the Salto VOD service.
Salto, which is a joint project between France Televisions, TF1 and M6, was announced in June 2018 as the three broadcasters look to stem the threat of US digital platforms in the country. It will air exclusive premieres of content alongside original and legacy content from the three broadcasters.
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Les Echos says all three have signed up to the commitments, which include placing a 40% limit on the amount of exclusive non-movie content that is made available on the platform. They have also agreed to limit the amount of content rights that will be made exclusively available to Salto instead of licensing to third parties.
The commitments, which would last for five years, also include an acceptance of non-discriminatory conditions around how channels are supplied to the platform, meaning that Salto must be subject to the same distribution conditions as rival platforms such as SFR, Orange, Canal+ and Free.
The regulator has until 19 July to reach a decision on the joint venture, unless it opts to launch a more in-depth probe, which would give it 65 days to reach a decision. The European Commission had previously opted not to rule on the SVOD plan, sending it back to the Autorite.
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When the project was unveiled, Delphine Ernotte Cunci, chairwoman and CEO of France Televisions, said: “I am delighted by the launch of this joint platform, which is a major development for the future of the French broadcasting industry. Salto will be able to respond to the challenge of global platforms by offering a high-quality service to all our audiences and showcasing the best of the French and European creative industries.”
It comes at a time when more and more broadcasters are turning to their own platforms to compete with the likes of Netflix and Amazon Prime Video. In the UK, the BBC and ITV have partnered to launch Britbox, a streaming service that is dedicated to the “best of British” programming. In the US, the likes of Disney, Discovery and AT&T (through WarnerMedia) are all planning their own streaming services which will offer exclusive content whilst leveraging their massive back catalogues.
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