Ruling puts Orange Sport on subs bench

March 20, 2009 | 11:35 UK

Orange has announced it is suspending the sale of new subscriptions to Orange Sport between March 24 and 31. The decision comes in the wake of the February 23 hearing by the Paris Tribunal of Commerce that ordered the platform to cease the bundling of the channel with its triple play offer in a challenge brought by Free, SFR and Canal+ Group. The ruling also ordered Orange to make the channel available on a wholesale basis.

If the Appeal Court rejects Orange’s request to suspend the ruling, the channel would be obliged to extend its suspension on subscriptions until the Appeal Court makes its announcement on the validity of the ruling.
The channel will remain available for existing subscribers and the channel has promised to set up special screenings in 50 cafés in towns where matches in Ligue 1 football is played.

Orange, which has also suspended the purchase of further sports rights, says it had established Orange Sport in the context of rulings made by the French Competition Council (Conseil de le Concurrence).