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Virgin Media buys UTV Ireland; Cellnex acquires Bouygues towers

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Virgin Media buys UTV Ireland; Cellnex acquires Bouygues towers


* 's it agreed to free-to-air commercialbroadcaster UTV Ireland from ITVPlc for €10 million. The transaction, expected to be approved inthe coming months, also includes a comprehensive 10-year output deal for Irelandfor ITV-produced programming.

*Spain's Cellnex Telecom is acquiring 230 towers fromBouygues Telecom for€80 million, and signed a 20-year partnership with the French operator,according to a statement.The purchase marks Cellnex Telecom's first deal in France.

*French over-the-top platform Molotov officially launched in France, according to an emailed news release. The platform offers 33channels, including 25 channels of the French DTT, and 10 hours of bookmarks.Molotov is available on smartphones, tablets, Apple TV, connected TVs and onPCs.


* TheU.K. House of Lords Select Committee on Communications urged the country'sgovernment not to privatize Channel 4 (UK). In its reporton the matter, the committee argued that privatization would pose more risksthan benefits to the public broadcaster in terms of its remit and commitment tosupport independent producers, among others.

* OfcomChief Executive Sharon White said the British Broadcasting Corp. will not get a specialtreatment as the regulator takes on more duties for the public broadcaster, The Guardian (London) reports.Under the BBC's new charter, from 2017, Ofcom will be responsible formaintaining the broadcaster's impartiality and accuracy, as well as oversee itsonline written output.

* ITV'shead of factual entertainment Sue Murphy hired Kate Teckman and Nicola Lloyd tobe commissioning editors, Broadcast reports.Teckman joins the broadcaster from Channel 4, while Lloyd previously worked forindependent TV producer Twenty Twenty.

*EE Ltd. is offeringsix months of free access to the BT Sport app for its mobile customers. Theoffer, which allows EE subscribers to watch BT Sport channels live, comes afterEE became part ofBritish Telecom.


* 's VodafoneGermany will give existing customers extra data, the company said in a statementposted on PresseBox. Those on data plans with 1.5 GB a month will get an extra500 MB for the same price while customers with 3 GB monthly data will get anextra 1 GB, with the upgrade available to private customers in July via theMeinVodafone App.

*Discount operator Ortel Mobile said in a statementthat it will offer customers in Germany more high-speed data from Aug. 1. Datavolume for the Option Smart 180 package will increase to 600 MB from 180 MB,while data for the Option Smart 500 will double to 1 GB.

*Sky Deutschland GmbHrolled out its kids' app in Germany and Austria following its in the U.K. earlier in2016, Dwdl reports.Sky Kids is available for subscribers of the Sky Entertainment package for noextra cash on iPad and selected Android tablets.

*Unitymedia customerswith pre-2013 contracts can only take advantage of new rules, which allow for achoice of router, if they switch to a new contract, reports,citing a company statement. The German government ruled in 2015 that internetproviders can no longer force customers to use specific hardware to get online,with the new regulation taking effect at the beginning of August.


* FranceTélévisions SA confirmed that the name of its new public newschannel is Franceinfo:, and unveiled its main programming, Les Echos reports.The channel, which will have a staff of 176, will go live Sept. 1.

* VivendiSA unit Canal PlusSA launched a new low-cost subscription-video-on-demand service formobile in Africa, Les Echos reports.Together with partner Iroko, the offer targets Africa's middle class with apricing structure adapted to the local purchasing power at €2 per month.


*Japan's Rakuten looking to start video-on-demand services in the Netherlands through itsvideo streaming service unit, Telecompaper reports.The company will offer a private beta trial of the Dutch version of Wuaki,inviting willing testers to join. Details about the starting date or type ofsubscription to be offered were not disclosed.

* Dutch tax authorities wrongly refused a €6.5 millioninterest deduction to a Dutch holding company of Sweden'sEricsson AB in 2004, Het Financieele Dagblad reports,quoting a High Council decision. The judgment is a boost for companies wantingto claim interest deduction in the Netherlands and a setback for the TaxOffice, according to the report.

* Dutch media authority CvdM will maintain the finespreviously imposed on Limburg regional broadcaster L1 for eight violations inthe area of sponsorship and advertising, Villamedia reports.L1 does not agree with the decision and will, along with its broadcastinglicense holder Stichting Omroep Stichting, take the case to court.  

* RoboValley, a Dutch robotics innovation hub, received a€500,000 investment from global professional services company Accenture, makingthe company the most prominent partner of RoboValley, The money will be used to facilitate international research intorobotics, among other things.


* emerged as a strongpotential buyer for TDCA/S, Børsen reports.TDC's stock price recently rose 9% on the strength of news of a takeover offermade by a private equity fund.

*The Stockholm District Court moved up the court trial date for formerFingerprint Cards AB CEO Johan Carlström to April 2017, Affärsvärlden reports.The case, which was expected to start in November 2017, involves possiblebreaches of insider trading rules.

*Telenor ASA conductedan opinion poll to determine consumer attitudes in toward the digitalization of public services, reports.About 73% of respondents expressed a desire to receive all notifications frommunicipal authorities via email.


*Telefónica SA andSpanish financial services provider Banco Sabadell launched TPV Movil, a mobilepoint of sale service aimed at small and medium enterprises and freelancecustomers, Telecompaper reports.TPV Movil can be accessed as a stand-alone service for €12 a month, or viasmartphones for €8 a month.

*Telecom Italia SpAGeneral Counsel and Executive Vice President for Legal Affairs Antonino Cusimanois exiting the company in September, the company announced.Cusimano will transfer to a major multinational firm outside to become its group general counsel.


* is suing Muz-TVin the Moscow Arbitration Court for 151 million Russian rublesin alleged unpaid dues, Broadband TV News reports,citing Vedomosti.  Rostelecom is seeking payment for access toits terrestrial frequency following an agreement with Muz-TV in 2012, and marksthe third lawsuit regarding the matter.

*Central European MediaEnterprises Ltd.'s Bulgarianbroadcaster bTV wantsto further the reach of its overseas channel bTV International via partnershipswith pay TV operators, Broadband TV News reports,citing Capital. The broadcaster isawaiting local regulation to secure its channel license, since it currentlyonly operates via internet platform voyo, according to the report.

*Romanian communications watchdog ANCOM launched a publicconsultation, as it aims to award two national, 26 regional and 18 localdigital terrestrial television licenses during an upcoming tender, Broadband TVNews reports.The licenses will reportedly be valid for 10 years, with the awardees allowedto immediately begin commercial services.


: Philippine telcosPLDT and Globe Telecom could face a heavy penalty regarding its jointacquisition of San Miguel's telecom unit, while HBO Asia is partnering withChina Movie Channel to co-produce martial arts films for TV.

: The billion-dollar-plus IPO of Japan-basedLINE Corp. catapults messaging apps into the spotlight and could signal aturnaround for a slumping IPO market, analysts and industry observers said.

: AT&T launched a programming slot on AUDIENCE Networkfor its DIRECTV and U-verse TV subscribers, while Netflix is working on newdrama series, called "Ozark."

: S&P Global Market Intelligence provides a wrap-up of mediaand communications deal announcements and completions from July 4 to July 8.

: S&P Global MarketIntelligence provides a wrap-up of European media and communications dealannouncements, completions and updates from July 4 to July 10.

: Twitter is holding talks with the NBA, Major League Soccerand Turner to acquire streaming rights to live sports and events, whileUnivision sued Charter and related entities over carriage contract post TimeWarner Cable merger.


GlobalMultichannel: Global connected device report: Indonesia: As themost populous country in Southeast Asia, Indonesia is the region's largestmarket in terms of consumer connected device ownership.

Economics of Internet:Internet radio listenership growing as subscription model gainsprominence: Internet music and radio services continue to seeincreases in listenership as streaming services market and promote theirplatforms to users migrating away from physical and download services.

Consumer Insights: Thereis nothing 'emerging' about Poland's use of digital entertainment:Despite being labeled as an "emerging market," Poland matches orexceeds "developed" Western Europe in its use of digitalentertainment.

Best of SNL: SNL Kaganresearch and analysis, editor's picks: Presenting the editor's toppicks from SNL Kagan's exclusive research and analysis for the week ended July8.

Sylvia EdwardsDavis, Patrick Winters, Charlotte van Hek and Gerard O'Dwyer contributed tothis report. The Daily Dose has an editorial deadline of 7 a.m. London time.Some external links may require a subscription.