Mediaset to launch 3 new DTT channels in 2010
From Branislav Pekic in Rome
Italian commercial broadcaster Mediaset plans to launch three new DTT channels and an on-demand offer via the Internet by the end of 2010.
According to Mediaset CFO, Marco Giordani, the three channels will be a "younger version" of the existing Italia 1 channel called Italia 2; a rolling-news channels; and La5, which would "integrate, without too much overlap", the programme offer already provided by Canale 5, Italia 1 and Rete 4. He added that the pay-TV service on DTT, Mediaset Premium, will break even this year with around 4.5m active smart cards and an annual ARPU of E120.
Giordani also revealed that Mediaset is developing a Hulu-style platform to deliver content on demand. For the moment a decision has not been made whether it will be a pay or free service, although eventually it is likely that some content will be subscription-based.
Meanwhile Italian publishing group Mondadori has also announced plans to develop DTT channels with the first of them devoted to fashion and lifestyle, likely to launch by the end of 2010.