TopTV to lose Current TV

2012-01-13 07:17
Thinus Ferreira
Cape Town – The South African pay TV operator TopTV is set to lose another TV channel it launched with great fanfare – this time Current TV – as the news channel's operations in Britain are set to shut down as soon as mid-March.

TopTV has still not replaced the Hi Nolly and One Music channels which disappeared from the TopTV bouquet in November when the channel provider HiTV in Nigeria imploded under debt.

TopTV promised replacement channels but hasn't yet provided any. The loss of Current TV (TopTV channel 406) will be the third channel discontinued since TopTV launched in May 2010, further weakening TopTV's bouquet offering.

When TopTV launched in May 2010 it launched Current TV – a youth-skewed news channel largely focused on user-generated content and documentaries as one of the channels on the bouquet with great fanfare. Current TV was started by Al Gore in America who attended TopTV's launch party and did a press conference.

Income

Current TV has a London operations and a separate British generated feed of Current TV which is the one South Africans are seeing on TopTV. Current TV is shown in Britain on the BSkyB pay TV platform. BSkyB is not renewing Current TV's contract due to what it calls low viewership and underperformance. According to Sky, Current TV is "one of the least watched TV channels".

"Despite investing significantly in Current TV since its UK launch in 2006, the channel simply hasn't made the impact with our customers that we hoped for. That is why we've decided not to renew our retail relationship," says Rob Webster, BSkyB's commercial director in a statement.

Current TV says that without the income from the BSkyB carriage deal, Current TV will have to close which is effectively shutting the channel down. Current TV has told its 23 staff members, contractors and programme suppliers that Current TV could close as soon as the middle of March.

"Sky is shutting down an intelligent alternative to mass market programming," said Joel Hyatt, the chief executive of Current Media, which owns Current UK, in a statement.

TopTV didn't immediately respond to media enquiries made regarding the future of Current TV on the pay TV operator's platform but said it's working on a response.

 

Comments

  • Seducect - 2012-01-13 07:48

    Hahahahahaha! Then people complain about DSTV! Give me my DSTV anytime. With or without repeats, I always find something new to watch!

  • vastis1 - 2012-01-13 08:34

    3 channels less, but the price stays the same? repeat after repeat after repeat, channel 180 has in 2 years shown "buffy and angel and boston legal" so many times not to mention family guy and the simptons! I stopped my Toptv this month and got DSTV!

  • clivecorbz - 2012-01-13 09:31

    I say again... Do you not have to put a disclaimer at the bottom of the article when writing about TopTV? Seeing as you guys are owned by Naspers (Owners of Multichoice)... I used to see them on the articles, but not anymore.

      Seducect - 2012-01-13 11:12

      And what does have to do with balanced reporting?

  • yolie.Landa - 2012-01-13 15:25

    There will still be retards who are going to uy their decoder because of this porn. Come dstv lets drink to that

  • Erena - 2012-01-13 16:05

    Now they want to pull people by adding porn chanal ha ha

  • John - 2012-01-14 13:58

    Why are you complaining so much it did not take DSTV a year to get where it is, why is it that people expect a superior service at a lower amount? If you don't like TopTv don't watch it...stick to the overpriced DSTV which offers new movie channels with old movies and still n o one complains. They offer the strange channels like BVN, RAI, RTL and still no complaints. It took Dstv years to get where it is so lets give Toptv time to find it's feet.

  • Gael Masengi - 2012-01-16 09:01

    To those who are saying 'TopTv need more time to get to its feet' i disagree with you. TopTv must know that, it's competing with a well established payTV provider (DStv) therefore it should have been ready. This is 21st century, consumers dont have time to understand 'us'..We pay for a better service not excuses. Losing 3 of your most watched channels in 5 months time! and they are doing nothing about it. As a TopTv subscriber, it got me thinking.

  • Gael Masengi - 2012-01-16 09:01

    To those who are saying 'TopTv need more time to get to its feet' i disagree with you. TopTv must know that, it's competing with a well established payTV provider (DStv) therefore it should have been ready. This is 21st century, consumers dont have time to understand 'us'..We pay for a better service not excuses. Losing 3 of your most watched channels in 5 months time! and they are doing nothing about it. As a TopTv subscriber, it got me thinking.

  • Andy - 2012-03-13 07:40

    IM NOT VERY HAPPY THAT TOP TV IS CLOSING DOWN CHANNELS AND THEY ARE UNABLE TO SAY WHAT THE REPLACEMENT WILL BE.HOW ABOUT OPENING UP ONE OF THE EXISTING CHANNELS THAT ARE BLOCKED TO REPLACE CURRANT TV. I LIKED THE CHANNEL THAT IS BEING SHUT DOWN. ANDY PIET RETIEF.

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