Television New Zealand and TV3-owner MediaWorks would not likely be allowed to merge, Prime Minister John Key has indicated.
Key appeared to confirm there had been interest in a transaction short of a merger, after a report of talks between TVNZ and MediaWorks in the Australian media.
“What I am aware of is a bit of discussion that there might have been some interest on the TVNZ side in relation to some of the assets owned by MediaWorks,” Key said. TVNZ spokeswoman Georgie Hills would not identify the “assets” Key was referring to.
Key said a merger was “very unlikely to happen”.
“I don’t think there is a great deal of support around that on the government side, which is a critical part of it as the Government would have to allow that to happen on the TVNZ side,” he said.
“We like the concept that there are competing networks.”
I like having competing networks also.
However I suspect there is not a very bright future for TV channels. The money is in producing shows, not being a channel. I doubt TVNZ would be worth much in a few years, so I’d sell it while we can, and let the Commerce Commission decide on competition issues.