Societe Television Francaise 1 to Offer Pay TV, Figaro Reports

Societe Television Francaise 1 (TFI), owner of France’s most-watched television channel, will begin offering pay-TV services next week, Le Figaro reported, citing comments by Laurent Solly, who heads its TF1 Publicite SA unit.

In the initial phase of the roll-out plan, customers will be able to buy TF1 pay-TV boxes and cards at 120 Boulanger stores in France, according to the newspaper. Each card will cost 19.90 euros ($26.65), be valid for three months and grant access to three pay-TV channels including LCI, Le Figaro said. Clients will be able to recharge the card, the daily said.

TF1 is seeking to retain market share and advertising revenue as it competes with pay-TV operators such as Vivendi SA (VIV)’s Canal Plus. TF1 aims to win thousands of new clients with its pay-TV offering by the end of 2012, the daily said. It exited the pay-TV market five years ago with the sale of its Television Par Satellite unit, according to the newspaper.

To contact the reporter on this story: Albertina Torsoli in Paris at atorsoli@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Phil Serafino at pserafino@bloomberg.net

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