Virgin Media is preparing to submit a writ in the High Court in the latest phase of the cablenet’s carriage fee dispute with BSkyB. Virgin’s lawyers Ashurst are expected to deliver the writ as early as this week disputing BSkyB’s rejection that it had acted in an uncompetitive manner by removing its basic channels from the cable platform.
The dispute centres around the amount paid for basic channels Sky One, Sky News and Sky Sports News. BSkyB argues that it has invested heavily in the channels, particularly Sky One, but Virgin claims audiences to the Sky channels are falling. There is also friction over the amount already agreed between Virgin and Sky over the carriage of the former Flextech-branded channels, Living, Trouble and Bravo, on the satellite platform earlier this year.