UK Gold this week confirmed it will withdraw its service from Videotron cable households next month, after failing to reach agreement on terms with the cable operator.
The move will result in UK Gold losing two per cent of its 3.5 million weekly viewers, but it is a sacrifice necessary to preserve existing contracts with other operators, says chief executive Bruce Steinberg.
“They demanded flexibility which they were not willing to pay for,” he adds. “It’s not fair to give a better deal to one cable operator.”
Videotron wants to charge subscribers more to receive UK Gold than other operators. However, UK Gold’s positioning is as a broad penetration channel, says Steinberg. “I am disappointed we are having to take this step. We’ll lose revenue but it’s a question of sacrificing two per cent of the business to save the other 98.”
UK Gold is the second most popular channel after Sky One in basic-tier, multi-channel homes. The channel, which next month unveils a new, triple-strand schedule – Masterpiece, Showcase and Spotlight – remains hopeful an agreement can still be reached.