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Volume 6 No. 216


Discovery Communications "plans to pay several hundred million dollars for a minority stake" in sports network Eurosport, a unit of French media company TF1, according to Jannarone & Schechner of the WALL STREET JOURNAL. Discovery will "form a strategic partnership with TF1 as a result of the investment." TF1 also owns a major broadcast network in France. While a formal agreement has not been signed, Discovery and TF1 have "entered exclusive negotiations." An announcement "could come shortly." The deal "could help Discovery enter new overseas markets by bundling its channels alongside the Eurosport networks on pay-TV services." Eurosport airs in 59 countries (WSJ, 11/13).

With the Brasileiro in its final stages and the F1 season coming to a close, Brazilian broadcaster Globo "faces a dilemma on Sunday," according to FOLHA DE S. PAULO. The U.S. Grand Prix, the second to last race of the year, is scheduled for 5pm local time. Unfortunately for Globo, five of the Week 36 Brasileiro matchups are scheduled during the same time slot, including the game between legendary Brazilian clubs Palmeiras and Flamengo. The game is of even more interest for Brazilian fans as "it could consolidate" Palmeiras' relegation to the second division. Meanwhile, the U.S. Grand Prix could see Sebastian Vettel win his third consecutive World Championship. Globo has come out and revealed that "it has not defined" its programming schedule for Sunday yet. The broadcaster also did not say whether there was a clause in its contract with F1 that forces them to air races live (FOLHA DE S. PAULO, 11/12).

ITV has "reported a 6% year-on-year fall in TV ad revenues in the third quarter of '12 as advertisers held back spend while viewers tuned into the BBC's London Olympics coverage," according to Mark Sweney of the London GUARDIAN. The commercial broadcaster "took a battering during the three months to the end of September thanks to the Games airing on the ad-free BBC." ITV's TV ad revenues "fell 10% year-on-year in July and 9% in August," but the network said a 1% fall in September means across the first nine months the broadcaster remains in "positive territory." With the "crucial, and tough, negotiating season for '13 TV advertising deals set to start, CEO Adam Crozier was keen to point out that ITV's decline has been due to one-off TV events this year." Crozier said, "This has been an extraordinary year for U.K. television with many unique events including the Queen's Jubilee, the London Olympics and the Paralympics" (GUARDIAN, 11/13).