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SBD Global/June 19, 2014/Media

French Pay-TV Channel Canal+ Loses Court Case Against Rival BeIN Sports

French pay-TV operator Canal+ "has lost a case at the Commercial Court of Nanterre in which the company accused its rival beIN Sports of unfair competition," according to TELECOM PAPER. Canal+ was seeking €293M ($398M) "in damages." The court agreed that beIN Sports "benefited from very large financial means, but it found that so did Canal+ parent company Vivendi." The court rejected Canal+’s claim that beIN Sports subscription prices "were abnormally low compared to market prices," citing other services. BeIN Sport charged €12 a month when Canal+ sued and now charges €13 ($18). The court also found that Canal+ "had invested more than beIN Sports for broadcasting rights and judged that Canal+ failed to demonstrate that its market entry led to a rise in rights acquisition prices" (TELECOM PAPER, 6/18). BFMTV's Jamal Henni reported Canal+ was ordered to pay €100,000 ($136,000) "in court costs to its Qatari rival." Most of the €293M Canal+ was seeking in damages "comes for its claim to have lost 187,000 subscribers," each valued at €1,500. In return, beIN Sports asked the court to sentence Canal+ to pay €66M ($90M) in damages, but "was also unsuccessful" (BFMTV, 6/18).
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