If the game seems won for the two behemoths of the small screen, a new suitor could play the spoilsports: Xavier Niel. The latter indicated to Arcom last week his intention to respond to the call for applications.
A foot in the media
The boss of Free is a media man: he is a shareholder of “Le Monde”, owner of “Nice-Matin” and co-founder of the production company Mediawan, one of the leaders in audiovisual production (which owns the AB Productions group and Lagardère Studios). According to “Les Échos”, the vice-president of Iliad, the parent company of Free, Maxime Lombardini, had mentioned during a hearing before Arcom, the possibility of strengthening the production of prime time fiction and new formats. .
Opposite, TF1 and M6 find themselves weakened by the aborted plan to merge the two channels on the one hand, and by the end of their Salto common platform on the other hand. But while TF1 remains a leading channel, despite declining audiences in 2022, and has already signed an agreement with producer unions and authors’ societies for the years to come, the situation of M6 is much more worrying. The RTL group claimed to want to keep the channel in October 2022 and twice refused takeover offers from a certain Xavier Niel. In any case, “a new entrant will force TF1 and M6 to move”, confides to “Echoes” a source close to the file.