Rival to Teletext unveils strategy

The joint TV text venture between BSkyB and Channel 5 challenging Teletext is to launch on October 15. It will concentrate on travel and tourism.

The service, called 5 Text, will begin with 400 pages, 200 of which will be dedicated to the travel sector. Existing UK TV text services account for about 50m in TV advertising – 37m from travel.

5 Text will be headed by general manager David Kline. The aim of the new company will be to challenge Teletext, which operates the Channel 4 and ITV services, for a share of the UK’s TV text advertising revenue. 5 Text claims it will have the largest travel and leisure TV text section in the UK.

The company is split evenly between C5 and BSkyB. The two companies were awarded a ten-year licence to operate the service by the Independent Television Commission in July.

Between them the companies bid 1.5m to operate the service. Teletext put in a bid of 313,000.

In the UK, about 18 million people have textline services on their sets. Last year, Teletext made profits of 8m on a turnover of 35m.

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