Murdoch Said to be Latest Bidder for Kirch Pay-TV Platform

23 April 2002

Despite countless denials in recent months, Rupert Murdoch is again being touted as the saviour of cash-haemorrhaging pay-TV platform Premiere World, a division of disintegrating German media empire Kirch Gruppe.

The media mogul is believed to have drawn up a rescue deal that would see NewsCorp-controlled British satellite operator BSkyB take over the management of Premiere, which is part of KirchPayTV.

NewsCorp would pump the necessary cash into the UK firm and put the financial risk from Premiere on its own balance sheet, so as to prevent claims that BSkyB is being used to buy the German company – something the British pay-TV group’s ceo Tony Ball vowed not to do.

BSkyB already owns 22% of Premiere, but has so far insisted that it just wants to retrieve its money via an option to sell the stake back to Kirch later this year.

Data sourced from: BrandRepublic (UK); additional content by WARC staff