Cyprus Mail

CyTA meeting in face of threat from cable channels

State-run telecoms corporation CyTA this week convened a meeting to discuss, among others, the recent cooperation deal between two of its competitors in the cable TV sports business.

The meeting, according to daily Phileleftheros, brought together CyTA’s board and senior executives to strategise in the wake of an agreement struck between Cablenet and Primetel.

The deal, announced last week, will see Cablenet and Primetel deploy a shared-access platform for their respective subscribers.

As of the 2018-2019 season, the shared platform will offer subscribers 10 sports channels, featuring the most popular Cypriot football teams and games from major European football leagues, as well as basketball and a variety of sports tournaments from around the world.

Selected football games will also be available through livestreaming on the internet.

Moreover, the deal provides for joint management and promotion of the television sports content, streamlining registration procedures for individual and corporate subscribers.

The deal represents a significant threat to CyTA’s own television subscription business.

Phileleftheros reports that, due to in-house differences of opinion, the state telco had missed an opportunity to strike a deal first with either of its competitors.

Over the last three years CyTA was in talks with Primetel over content sharing. In addition, during the past months overtures were made to Cablenet but the negotiations went nowhere.

This paved the way for Primetel and Cablenet to come together.

And the deal comes hot on the heels of another recent development which is likely to pose a threat to CyTA’s share of the internet market.

Last month, South African telecoms group MTN announced the sale of its Cyprus operations to Monaco Telecom SA.

In a statement at the time, Monaco Telecom said it ‘carefully selected’ MTN Cyprus ‘because of its potential and prospects’.

The company reportedly paid €260 million for MTN Cyprus, which last year had a turnover of €123 million.

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