SeeSaw loses Channel 4 deal and chairman designate

TV catch-up aggregator SeeSaw has lost its content deal with Channel 4 the broadcaster’s former CEO – and SeeSaw chairman designate – Michael Jackson.


Channel 4’s move to drop the deal means TV shows including The Inbetweeners (pictured), Peep Show and Skins are no longer available to watch on the SeeSaw website. Channel 4 would not comment on why the deal ended.

However BBC Worldwide and Channel 5’s catch-up content remains available on the site.

SeeSaw has also suffered another blow as its chairman designate Michael Jackson, former Channel 4 chief executive is understood to have left the venture.

Earlier this summer private equity firm and owner of social network Bebo, Criterion Capital Partners, bought a majority stake in SeeSaw from its parent company Arqiva in July.

Criterion was planning to bring Jackson on board to lead a turnaround of the company, which even closed in May as it struggled to find a buyer before Criterion bought the service.

Jackson is currently a director at Scottish ITV-licensee STV.


Jessica Davies, NMA Viewpoint:

Losing Channel 4 as a content partner is a serious blow for SeeSaw. It has faced stiff competition from the TV catch-up services of the major broadcasters and hasn’t managed to embed its brand as a household name. To succeed as an online TV destination it needed the buy-in of all the broadcasters, and unfortunately it needs them more than they need SeeSaw, as the unsuccessful renegotiation of the Channel 4 demonstrates. Being part of Bebo could breathe new life into the platform, but it needs to rectify its lack of content sooner rather than later if it’s to have a chance in the crowded online TV space.

This story first appeared on New Media Age. For more digital stories and analysis’ from NMA click here now

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