Orange wants to strike TV channels deal soon

Orange France wants to strike a deal for the sale of its movies and sports channels by January, with a view to completing the process by the end of 2011, according to France Telecom director of content Xavier Couture.

Couture told La Tribune newspaper that while Orange had been in talks with a number of actors, including a possible US purchaser, only Canal Plus had formally expressed an interest at this stage. The pay-TV operator wants to combine the Orange Ciné Max channel with its own TPS Star service. If the CSA gives approval, the deal could see other Orange Cinéma Séries channels distributed to CanalSat subscribers and channels currently exclusive to CanalSat could be made accessible to Orange TV subscribers.