France Télévisions takes stake in TV5

The France Télévisions group will become the main shareholder of TV5 Monde, taking over the shares held by AEF.

The move is a result of the swap of the 49% stake in the French international TV channel owned by the government-owned AEF holding of Franch international broadcasters (which also includes France24 and RFI). In return, the AEF will now hold 12.6% in state broadcaster France Télévisions.

The decision turns back the clock, as France Télévisions used to be a shareholder of TV5 before president Nicolas Sarkozy decided to bring the TV channel under control of the AEF. Although France Télévisions is now again the main shareholder, the state will continue to fund TV5 directly.

The interests of the Francophone countries will remain unchanged, with broadcast partners Radio Canada, Tele Quebec, and public broadcasters from Switzerland (SRG) and Belgium (RTBF).

The new shareholder arrangement should also solve the problem of the appointment of the president of TV5Monde.

TV5Monde claims to be one of the world’s biggest television networks with nine different regional channels, eight broadcast from Paris covering all continents and TV5 Quebec-Canada broadcasting from Montreal. In Europe there are two versions available, one for France, Switzerland and Belgium and one for the rest of Europe.

TV5Monde has five French-language partner channels (France 2, France 3, France 4, France 5, France O’, ARTE France, RTBF.be, TSR, Radio Canada and Télé-Québec), with CIRTEF (the International French Speaking Radio-Television Council) and now France Télévisions as the main shareholders.