Virgin Media has begun marketing Skys premium channels at a cut-price fee following OfcomÂs ruling that Sky must charge its rivals wholesale prices to carry its premium channels.
The UK cable operator claims customers can save up to Â£108 (Â130) per year with the newly priced channel packages. From July 1 Virgin Media customers on M Plus, L or XL TV packages will be able to receive Sky Sports 1 and 2 or Sky Movies 1 and 2 for Â£13.50 per month, a saving of Â£9 per month on current fees. The Sky Sports Collection package of Sky Sports 1,2,3 and 4 will cost Â£20.50 per month, a saving of Â£42 per year. The Sky Movie Collections package of Sky Movies 1 and 2, Sky Movies Premiere, Sky Movies Premiere Plus 1, Sky Movies Showcase and Disney Cinemagic will also cost Â£20.50 per month, saving subscribers Â£84 per year.
In March, UK communications regulator Ofcom ruled that Sky must offer Sky Sports 1 and 2 to rival operators for Â£10.63 (Â12.88) per subscriber per month for each channel Â a 23.4% reduction on existing prices. Virgin has launched an appeal claiming that Ofcom failed to regulate the prices of Sky Sports 3 and 4, and didnÂt set any controls on the wholesale prices for Sky Sports 1 and/or 2 where they are bundled with other premium channels, including Sky Sports 3 and 4, and SkyÂs premium movie channels.