Cogeco Câble inc.
TSX : CCA

Cogeco Câble inc.

February 02, 2011 10:36 ET

BCE's Takeover of CTVglobemedia: Cogeco Cable Asks CRTC to Keep Close Watch to Preserve Competition and Protect Consumer Interests

MONTRÉAL, QUÉBEC--(Marketwire - Feb. 2, 2011) - Cogeco Cable Inc. (TSX:CCA) appeared today before the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) in a public hearing reviewing BCE's takeover of CTVglobemedia. Cogeco Cable once again stressed the importance of obtaining specific regulatory safeguards to prevent abuse of the dominant position that the new conglomerate would have if BCE's takeover of CTVglobemedia is approved.

In a presentation before the CRTC, Cogeco Cable President and CEO Louis Audet pointed out that, "ultimately, Canadian consumers risk footing the bill for concentration and vertical integration in the absence of greater oversight. The new conglomerate could sharply increase fees for popular specialty channels, such as sports networks TSN and RDS. Consumer price inflation will be even higher unless the new conglomerate foregoes collecting new fees for carriage of its conventional television channels which are available free on the air."

Mr. Audet also noted that, as COGECO indicated in the brief it submitted to the CRTC on January 11, 2011, the combined BCE and CTVglobemedia entity will control both a large number of television and content services, including sports services and programs, and a major share of the distribution of such services and content across all wired and wireless distribution platforms in the Canadian market, allowing it to exercise undue market power in the Canadian communications industry.

Cogeco Cable submits that the CRTC should implement the appropriate regulatory measures to avoid any abuse of the new conglomerate's dominant position, without awaiting a new vertical integration policy to be issued after public hearings later in 2011. "It's crucial for competition in the Canadian communications industry and, ultimately, for consumers, that the CRTC act immediately to implement stringent and effective controls," concluded Mr. Audet.

ABOUT COGECO CABLE

Cogeco Cable (www.cogeco.ca) is a telecommunications company and is the second largest hybrid fibre coaxial cable system operator in Ontario, Québec and Portugal. Through its two-way broadband cable networks, Cogeco Cable provides its residential customers with Audio, Analogue and Digital Television, as well as HSI and Telephony services. Cogeco Cable also provides to its commercial customers, through its subsidiary Cogeco Data Services, data networking, e-business applications, video conferencing, hosting services, Ethernet, private line, VoIP, HSI access, data storage, data security and co-location services and other advanced communication solutions. Cogeco Cable's subordinate voting shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX:CCA).

Contact Information

  • Marieke Tremblay
    514-764-4700