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French Olympics Committee launches new FTA sports channel

The French Olympic Sports Committee (CNOSF) has launched its planned free-to-air sports channel Sport en France, with the aim of improving the media exposure of a wide range of French sports.

The CNOSF hailed Sport en France as an innovative initiative that combined the creation of a traditional free-to-air TV channel available on cable, satellite and the web with an original offering of content to be made available to any media outlet that expressed an interest in airing it.

The body said that the channel would be based on a new model that would benefit all sports, and that it was not intended to compete with existing sports rights holders but rather to complement the offerings of existing sports broadcasters.

The CNOSF said that Sport en France would be dedicated to all sporting disciplines, with the aim of promoting the activities of some 107 sports federations and their associated members.

The channel will have an annual budget of around €3 million and will air magazine shows, profiles, transmissions of some live events and time-shifted broadcasts of others, with over 500 hours of original content to be aired each year.

The CNOSF has tapped Groupe Reworld Media/Media365 to produce the channel from its Boulogne-Billancourt studios.

The channel is currently available on the Sportenfrance.com website and on the TV offerings of ISPs Orange, Bouygues Telecom and Free, with SFR to take the service from June 25.

“For me, as someone who has fought for 20 years for another way of doing sports television, to create a TV channel for all sports, based on equality for all and not on the prejudices of audiences, is a dream come true,” said Denis Masseglia, president of the CNOSF.

“Sport en France is a channel for the sporting world so its mission will be promote the sporting world in all its forms, without limits or exclusivity, since the programming can be shared with anywone that wants it. Sport en France aims to be the channel of the sporting world and to belong to its participants.”

The CNOSF’s initiative follows a similar move by Spanish football organisation La Liga in Marchto launch a new OTT TV service that offers access to a range of minority sports from national sporting associations as well as second division football and summaries of La Liga matches.

Tags: CNOSF, France