Luxembourg group buys Skylink

07.06 Europe/London, October 1, 2011 By Chris Dziadul

The leading Czech and Slovak DTH platform Skylink has been bought by the M7 Group, the Luxembourg-based owners of the rival operation CS Link for an undisclosed sum. Unconfirmed reports speak of a total value of the deal of €80 million.

News of the deal was confirmed by both Jaromir Glisnik, CEO of Skylink, and Kees Fäber, from the M7 Group. The deal was made via M7′s fully owned subsidiary M77, which also owns CS Link.
The M7 Group acquired CS Link from Media Vision earlier this year and is itself the operator of CanalDigitaal in the Netherlands, TV Vlaanderen in Flanders, AustriaSat and HD Austria in Austria and TéléSat in French-speaking Belgium and Luxembourg.
Skylink has until now operated as a joint venture between the Czech Republic’s TradeTec and Slovakia’s Towercom.
Both it and CS Link employ the Astra 23.5 degrees East position, which is also used in the Benelux countries, and together they serve over 2.1 million homes in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.
Skylink and CS Link both operate with prepaid cards, where viewers can buy three, six or 12 months of subscription.
The M7 Group plans to use synergies between the two platforms, but will also use the Astra capacity to simulcast channels for the Dutch and Belgian DTH markets it serves. Following the acquistion, the M7 Group now operates 10 transponders on the 23.5 degrees East postion in addition to three transponders on 19.2 degrees East.