AB1 to quit French DTT

French media company AB Groupe is planning to pull its AB1 channel from the country’s DTT system. No formal decision has yet been made and the company is currently in discussion with the media regulator CSA. If it goes ahead AB1 would be the first channel to hand back its licence.
AB Groupe currently pays €4 million a year for the terrestrial distribution of its signals. When the ‘TNT’ system is extended to cover the entire country the fee is expected to rise to between €5 and €6 million.
Should the licence be returned then the CSA will be expected to advertise the frequency.

AB Groupe has previously been a strong supporter of French DTT. It operates the Bis TV package on the Eutelsat Atlantic Bird and Hot Bird satellites, offering the DTT line up with optional pay channels, to viewers outside the present coverage area.