The French telecoms operator Orange is in talks with Canal+ about the future of its premium TV channels, according to local reports.
There is a possibility that the Orange Cinéma Séries channel will merge with Canal +’s movie channel TPS Star. Further news is likely on Thursday, July 29, when France Telecom, the owner of Orange, is expected to report the Q2 results.
France Telecom is reconsidering the future of its content business since its CEO Didier Lombard stepped down. Stéphane Richard, the new man at the helm, recently announced the company will concentrate on its core business rather than be involved with content and premium TV channels.
At the moment Orange Cinéma Séries has 480,000 subscribers, while its sister channel Orange Sport has 320,000. TPS Star is a legacy from the old TPS DTH platform, which was taken over by the Canal + Group from a consortium of TF1, M6 and France Telecom.
Interestingly, according to French news reports, Orange is looking for another partner for its sports channel. Richard seems to be looking to tie up with News Corp for its sports channels rather than with the Canal Group.
Orange Sports shares the rights to the French football league (Ligue 1) with Canal+ till 2012.