Cablenets warned on carriage charges

CTAM EUROSUMMIT ’08 – BERLIN. Cable operators have been warned that programmers may look elsewhere if they are unable to reach agreements on their carriage.

Speaking at EUROSUMMIT ’08, Chellomedia COO Niall Curran said there were inevitable stresses and strains between operators and content providers because their interests are not necessarily aligned. “If you look at the broader set of relationships the impact of the credit crunch means cablenets are sensibly starting to look at cost margins and there’s almost a reflex to push back on both technology and content suppliers,” Curran told his audience in Berlin.

Curran said a lot of content providers are starting to look study carriage on free DTT networks and even over the top distribution. “You can’t act as if the content guys have got no alternative. The bigger and stronger the player, then the more likely they are to think about over the top technologies and that has major implications.

Duco Sickinghe, CEO, Telenet said broadcasters were in danger of overplaying their hand. “There are two types of content providers, the true originators and the packagers. They try to push us against the wall and squeeze us, but our reaction is to go out and find better content that will differentiate us.”